A Kite with a Broken String

A Kite with a Broken String (2013)
for Orchestra

“A Kite with a Broken String” is the second movement of my Symphony No. 2 “Sky Trilogy”.

Semi-Finalist, The American Prize in Composition – Orchestra Music Professional Division (2016)
The Honorable Mention of National Taiwan Symphony Orchestra Composition Competition (2015)

Piccolo, 2 Flutes, 2 Oboes, English Horn, 2 Clarinets (Bb), Bass Clarinet, 2 Bassoons, Contrabassoon, 4 Horns, 3 Trumpets (C), 2 Trombones, Bass Trombone, Tuba, Timpani, Percussion 1 (1 5-oct. marimba, 1 lion’s roar), Percussion 2 (1 slapstick shared with Perc. 3, 1 snare drum, 1 suspended cymbal), Percussion 3 (1 rainstick, 1 bamboo wind chimes, 1 slapstick shared with Perc. 2), Harp, Strings.

World Premiere:
August 19, 2015
Final Concert of the National Taiwan Symphony Orchestra Composition Competition 2015
Concert Hall of National Taiwan Symphony Orchestra, Taichung, Taiwan
Lin Liao conducts National Taiwan Symphony Orchestra
NTSO Composition Competition 2015

Duration: 11 minutes

Program Notes

A Kite with a Broken String for orchestra is an elegy, and it memorializes something that has been lost forever. As a kite flies higher and higher, the dream it represents becomes larger and larger. When the kite is chased by the wind in the sky, it seems that the dream encounters turbulence. Yet, with the aid of a string, the kite, as well as the dream, can survive the turbulence and continue to fly high. After the kite twists in the air, the string snaps, and the kite falls to the ground. This broken string is like an unexpected obstacle that can make a dream vanish right away.

A Kite with a Broken String is a piece with many long and short falling melodic lines. Somehow the melodic lines attempt to go higher, like a kite trying to lift, but the struggle to go any higher proves to be impossible, and eventually these melodic lines fall and disappear into the whole orchestra. The end of the main theme with repeated notes often resembles a downward glissando, and it implies a weeping gesture. Helplessness and loneliness prevail throughout the entire piece. A kite without a string can also resemble a candle in the wind. Both can lose their momentum unexpectedly, as with the sudden loss of life. The sense of loss cannot be forgotten, and life cannot return to what it used to be. All one can do is let go of the kite and allow it never to come back.

This is the world premiere recording.



– Feng-Hsu Lee (September 21, 2013 West Hartford, CT)

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