Angels Dancing With The Sun And The Moon by James D’Angelo
Score and parts
Instrumentation: flute, oboe, clarinet, horn, bassoon
This work is part of a series of compositions for various instrumental combinations based on the paintings of the mystical British artist Cecil Collins (1908-1990). A chief feature of the painting created in 1949 is how the curvature of these slender angels emerges out of the roundedness of the sun and the moon.
Written in January 2018 especially for the Roaring Fork Quintet who premiered the piece in a Bristol concert, the music depicts the swirl,, the improvisation and the freedom of the choreography of these seven dancing angels. This round dance of freedom is reflected in the music by the shifting time signatures.
Although the angels are shown as a sweeping unity joined together as sets of three and four, the music suggests through solos that they are also individuals in their own right. It is assumed that the angels’ movements arise out of a meditative stillness and this quality is given by the slow introduction and slow final bars as well as by reference to these sections along the way.