Threnody, composed in 2020 by Solomon Ge and performed by him in this premiere recording, is an anguished utterance from the heart of the COVID pandemic.
The composer writes:
I began writing Threnody around the start of the shelter in place order in March 2020 and completed it towards the end of the year. My piece expresses my thoughts and feelings about the state of the world during the pandemic, with all its chaos, turbulence, and loss of life.
I was very interested in the waves of dissonant overtones and the musical tension that could be generated from repeating a set of pitches very many times while holding down the pedal, and I wanted to use this effect to create a slowly morphing storm of sound, which erupts into violent climax before receding back once again.
My work is loosely dedicated to all who have suffered during this pandemic.
All proceeds from this digital-only release will be donated to the Jed Foundation, an organization working directly to support the emotional health and resilience of teens and young adults.
Designer Denise Burt has donated an edition of 10 fine-art prints of her album artwork, made with museum-quality archival (pigment-based) inks. A signed, numbered print costs $100 and includes the digital download.
Solomon Ge performs Threnody at Old First Concerts in San Francisco.