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And the Sun Brought Darkness

    1 Trombone, 1 Piano (uses E-bow)

    Duration: ca. 10 minutes
    Composed: 2022

    Programme Note:


    On March 13, 1989 the entire province of Quebec suffered an electrical power blackout.  What made this different from other blackouts was that it was caused by a solar storm.  On Friday March 10, astronomers had witnessed a powerful explosion on the sun. Within minutes, the magnetic forces on the sun had released a billion-ton cloud of gas.  The vast cloud of solar plasma struck the Earth’s magnetic field and eventually found a weakness in the electrical power grid of Quebec. Following that, it only took 2 minutes before the entire Quebec power grid was down.

    This piece for trombone and piano was commissioned by Dale Sorensen, and is in two contrasting movements.  The first uses very small gestures and long, resonant ideas.  It is mysterious and atmospheric, becoming almost majestic.  It represents distance, darkness, and raw power.  The second movement is very active with momentum between the two instruments that propels the piece forward.  It alludes to flying particles and unstoppable energy.  

    Premiere: First performance by Dale Sorensen and Jennifer King, Wolfville, May 31, 2022.

    Kelly-Marie Murphy, composer