Images from Mt. Tahoma
Composed by Deborah J. Anderson in 2004
For Solo Bassoon and Flute Choir
Published by Alry Publications
Includes score and parts
Solo Bassoon (or Solo Bass Clarinet) and 8 C Flutes (or 6 Flutes, Alto flute, Bass Flute)
Images from Mt. Tahoma was written for John Ruze, Principal Bassoonist of the Tacoma Symphony Orchestra, and Jeannie Hill, Director of the Northwest Flute Collegium. It is also dedicated to John Ruze and, as far as we know, it is the first piece ever composed for solo bassoon and flute choir. I would like to acknowledge the countless hours John Ruze spent with me perfecting the bassoon part. Thank you, John! Many thanks also to Jeannie Hill and the members of the Northwest Flute Collegium, for their hard work and professional approach.
Tahoma, the Native American name for Mt. Rainier, means roughly “the mountain that is god,” or “near to heaven.” This mountain dominates and graces the Puget Sound region in Washington State. On a clear day, you glimpse it from so many turns in the road, you often want to stop your car to admire and absorb its powerful presence. How fortunate are those of us who live nearby! Indeed, because of our rainy climate, visitors might never see the mountain and must simply believe that it is there.
I grew up in Tacoma and have often hiked some of the many trails at the lower levels of the mountain. Images attempts to capture certain impressions one might receive during a visit to Mt. Rainer. The first movement, “River,” portrays the force and unpredictability of rivers formed by glacier run-off. Imagine milky-white freezing-cold water rushing down pell-mell, crashing into boulders, briefly changing directions, pursuing its ancient and relentless path. “Forest” invites you into the cool and dense areas still covered with patient old trees. Silence prevails; you hear only an occasional bird call. As you penetrate deeper amongst the tall trees, you find yourself alone. Thoughts turn inwards and emotions rise to the surface. Perhaps you perceive the pain of a personal situation; perhaps you receive release and healing. “Wind,” the final movement, addresses a more violent aspect of the mountain, drawing you into the wild nature of this element, surprising you with its sudden shifts of mood and tempo.