Rare Musical Composition Performed Under Spruce Goose | Aero-News Network
Aero-News Network
RSS icon RSS feed
podcast icon MP3 podcast
Subscribe Aero-News e-mail Newsletter Subscribe

Airborne Unlimited -- Most Recent Daily Episodes

Episode Date

Airborne-Monday

Airborne-Tuesday

Airborne-Wednesday Airborne-Thursday

Airborne-Friday

Airborne On YouTube

Airborne-Unlimited-06.10.24

Airborne-NextGen-06.11.24

Airborne-Unlimited-06.12.24 Airborne-FltTraining-06.13.24

Airborne-Unlimited-06.14.24

Tue, Jun 20, 2023

Rare Musical Composition Performed Under Spruce Goose

Of Airplanes on and Under the Roof

Recently, a rarely-performed hybrid work of music and avant-garde theater was performed at McMinnville, Oregon’s Evergreen Aviation & Space Museum.

The composition, titled One-Thousand Airplanes on the Roof, was written in the 1980s by composer Philip Glass and staged in the vast shadow of Howard Hughes’s colossal Hughes H-4 Hercules—better known throughout the wide world as the Spruce Goose.

Referred to by event organizer Third Angle New Music as a “one act sci-fi melodrama,” One-Thousand Airplanes on the Roof has rarely been performed in its entirety.

Third Angle New Music artistic director Sarah Tiedemann set forth the reason for the piece’s scarcity derives primarily of its atypical instrumentation and vocal arrangements.

Ms. Tiedemann stated of the work: “It’s for two synthesizers, three wind players playing saxophones and flutes, and I’m playing something called the EWI [an electronic wind instrument] and then a vocalist and an actor.”

Tiedemann added: “So it’s kind of a theater piece. It’s kind of not really a classical piece. An orchestra wouldn’t really do it. It’s kind of like a cross between classical music and Depeche Mode.”

Upon receiving One-Thousand Airplanes on the Roof’s score, the staff of Third Angle New Music discovered an additional complication.

“So it is handwritten, I assume in Philip Glass’s hand,” Ms. Tiedemann explained. “It clearly hasn’t been revised other than scribbles on it in the last forty-years. So there was a process with me on the floor with all of the parts: photocopying and cutting and pasting and transposing the instruments.”

Unfamiliar with the work’s intended sound, Tiedemann improvised.

“I managed to track down one archival video from a group in Scotland who did it 12 years ago, but that was just for a reference and that’s all we’ve got,” Tiedemann conceded.

Long-time Portland actor Ithica Tell, who played the production’s sole scripted role, elaborated on the part, stating the score’s complexities and eschewal of conventional motifs made for a challenging performance.

“We decided that we’re just gonna get someone to cue me, someone who’s incredibly capable of reading this music,” Tell related. “Someone’s gonna tell me when to go [and] I’ve taken the time to figure out how long, based on the rehearsals, my speech should take.”

Notwithstanding the composition’s inherent complexities, Tiedemann and Tell agreed the opportunity to perform the work against a backdrop as tremendous and superbly apposite as the Spruce Goose was a once-in-a-lifetime occurrence.

“She’s beautiful, you know,” Tell said of the storied aircraft. “You look at this plane and it’s silver and it looks like metal, but it’s wood. There’s something vibrant about that still, in an earth and sky kind of way.”

The Hughes H-4 Hercules, is a prototype strategic airlift flying boat designed and built by Howard Hughes’s aircraft company in 1947. The vast machine made a single short flight before being shelved by the U.S. War Department on account of WWII having ended and its moment of usefulness to the Allied war effort having passed.

The aircraft has been on display at western-Oregon’s Evergreen Aviation & Space Museum since 1993.

FMI: www.evergreenmuseum.org

Advertisement

More News

Icon Aircraft Bankruptcy Chooses A 'Winner' -- Appears to Be Chinese Ownership

'SG Investment America' Leads Small List Of Suitors News, Analysis and Opinion by ANN Editor-In-Chief, Jim Campbell The long, embarrassing saga of Icon Aircraft is entering a new c>[...]

'CLIMBING. FAST.' Campaign Builds Speed

Congressional Caucus Quickly Finds Fans in Business Aviation Community A dozen international Av-Biz stakeholders have responded to the establishment of the Congressional Sustainabl>[...]

Volato Chooses SmartSky for Internet Provisions

Future Operations to Sport End-to-End Internet Connectivity Throughout the Trip Volato has opted to go with SmartSky for its future inflight connectivity needs, selecting the Smart>[...]

ANNouncement: Now Accepting Applications For Oshkosh 2024 Stringers!!!

An Amazing Experience Awaits The Chosen Few... Oshkosh, to us, seems the perfect place to get started on watching aviation recover the past couple of years... and so ANN is putting>[...]

Surf Air Establishes Foothold in Brazil

Charter Operator Promises to Convert 4 of its Grand Caravans to Surf's Electric Propulsion Surf Air Mobility inked a memorandum of understanding with a Brazilian Caravan operator t>[...]

blog comments powered by Disqus



Advertisement

Advertisement

Podcasts

Advertisement

© 2007 - 2024 Web Development & Design by Pauli Systems, LC