Pentagon

Pentagon (2015)
for Wind Ensemble

Commissioned by Chiasong Ensemble

Instrumentation:
1 Flute, 1 Clarinet in B flat, 1 Tenor Saxophone in B flat, 2 Trumpets in B flat, 1 Horn in F, 2 Trombones, 1 Euphonium, 1 Tuba, 1 Percussion (Claves, 5 Woodblocks, 3 Tom-Toms, Snare Drum, Kick Drum, 1 Suspended Cymbal, 1 Hi-Hat, and Triangle)

World Premiere:
November 27, 2015 
Chiasong Ensemble Concert Chapter V “Just Five”
Kaohsiung Music Hall, Kaohsiung, Taiwan
Shi-Wei Lin conducts Chiasong Ensemble
Chiasong Ensemble Poster

Duration: 10 minutes

Program Notes

Accepting the commission of Chiasong Ensemble, I composed this piece Pentagon for wind ensemble. A pentagon is a five-sided polygon containing a (hidden) star-shape structure within. To portray a pentagon in music, I use the five notes from a pentatonic scale as five points of a pentagon; in the meantime, I apply some chromatic lines in the diatonic melodies to consist of a pentatonic scale. Driving in the fast tempo, two contrasting materials, which are diatonic and chromatic, co-exist together to create the momentum while producing the sound of brilliance and colorfulness.

Pentagon is a piece to pay tribute to a Taiwanese composer Tyzen Hsiao who passed away on February 25, 2015. In the slow sections of this piece, I quote a tune of Taiwanese plains aborigines (God Created Haven and Earth in the Taiwanese hymn book), which can be heard in the slow section of Tyzen Hsiao’s Ode to Taiwan. I admire Mr. Hsiao’s music marking and recognize it as outstanding Taiwanese music. In this piece, I intend to create a passionate and energetic effect and a sense of nostalgia while putting my own Taiwanese markings into it. For me, it is a way to tackle my own cultural identity and to memorialize a great Taiwanese composer Tyzen Hsiao.

接受了嘉頌重奏團的委託,我譜寫了這首為小型管樂團的《五光十色》(Pentagon)。五邊形是一種有五個邊的多邊形,其中也包含了一個隱藏的星形。用音樂來描繪這個形狀,我使用了五聲音階中的五個音,如同五邊形的五個連接點,同時我也放置了半音的線條進入這些五聲音階的全音旋律當中。樂曲一開始馳騁在快速節奏中,兩個全音與半音的對比音樂素材相互共存而創造出音樂的動力,製造出華麗又多彩的聲響。

《五光十色》也是一個向在2015年2月25日辭世的台灣作曲家蕭泰然老師致敬的作品。在這首曲子的慢板段落,我引用了一個台灣平埔族的曲調(台語聖詩《真主上帝造天地》),這個旋律也使用在蕭泰然老師作品《台灣頌》的慢板段落。我很欽羨蕭老師音樂作品中的台灣標誌,在這個曲子中,我也試圖放置著我自己的台灣標誌創造出熱情有充滿活力的動態與鄉愁的氛圍。對我而言,這樣可以尋找我自身的文化認同,也是一種紀念蕭泰然老師的方式。

– Feng-Hsu Lee (July 31, 2015 Hartford, CT)

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