Vidimus Stellam for Solo Flute by Sungji Hong
Extended techniques used: microtones; glissandi; pitch bends; flutter tongue; air sounds; jet whistles; harmonic sweeps; harmonic climbing
Vidimus Stellam for solo flute was commissioned by the National Flute Association to be performed by the semi-finalists at the Young Artist Competition. The piece was premiered by Jennie Oh Brown on 13 August 2021 during The National Flute Association Convention, and dedicated to Elizabeth McNutt, experimental flutist and friend, who has been an inspiration for the piece.
The Latin title translates to “We have seen His star” and pertains to the Biblical account of the star hovering above the birthplace of Christ. I wanted to create a sound that imitates the effect of a rapidly flickering star in the night sky; the way the starlight intensifies and changes its brightness in complex patterns. I explored this natural phenomenon with everchanging musical gestures of soft microtonal glissandi and pitch bends, and also in dynamic sections with jet whistles, harmonic sweeps, and harmonic climbings.