Midnight Sun Harp is a Chord Loading

"The Colour of Water" for solo saxophone(s) (soprano/alto/baritone) and chamber orchestra, commissioned by the Saxophonia festival (LV) and Klaipėda Music Spring (LT) with the support of the Lithuanian Council of Culture

Duration: 18'-20'

sax solo-2222-2200- 


VIDEO: WDR Sinfonieorchester, cond. Peter Rundel, solo Marcus Weiss

AUDIO: Riga Sinfonietta, cond. Normunds Šnė, solo Arvydas Kazlauska



Programme note

I expected to find complete darkness down below but at some point, much to my surprise, the ocean floor appeared transparent and radiant. Jacques Piccard, Swiss oceanographer and engineer

..e il naufragar m'è dolce in questo mare. Giacomo Leopardi (..and sinking in this sea is sweet to me)

“The Colour of Water” is the 3rd part of my Latvian trilogy together with “Elongation of Nights” (2009) for string orchestra and “Observation of Clouds” (2012) for voices, winds and strings, continuing to explore some discoveries made in the first two parts and also dedicated to Riga Sinfonieta, Maestro Normunds Šnē and the Lithuanian saxophone player Arvydas Kazlauskas residing in Latvia.

The piece is an attempt to poetically reflect on the illusory colour of water that doesn’t actually exist, trying to give answers through musical metaphors of reflection and generating the musical material while applying mirror principles which predetermine both macro and micro levels. The solo part is based on the obsessively oscillating pendulum of low and high notes gradually increasing the distance between them. As a consequence, the expanding space between the opposite poles is being filled in with the orchestral “liquid” of changing timbre/harmony colours until this symbolic container becomes inevitably overfilled. The strings are placed on the stage in a way to create the sound moving in an hypnotic circle/vortex which unites the swinging opposite poles of the solo part, whilst the soloist is being surrounded by the rising waves and submerged deeper and deeper down where the breathing stops and the tension of the polarity is released. Justė Janulytė 

© Éditions Salabert/Universal Music Publishing Classical


18 February 2017 Sinfonietta Riga, solo Arvydas Kazlauskas, cond. Normunds Šnė, Saxophonia festival, Great Guild Hall, Riga (LV) | 5 April 2017, Sinfonietta Riga, solo Arvydas Kazlauskas, cond. Normunds Šnė, Klaipėda String festival, Klaipėda Concert Hall (LT) | 27 October 2017, Lithuanian State Symphony Orchetsra, solo Arvydas Kazlauskas, cond. Jurjen Hempel, GAIDA festival, Congress Hall, Vilnius (LT)  | 22 June 2019, Musik der Zeit, Cologne, WDR Sinfonieorchester, solo Marcus Weiss, cond. Peter Rundel, Funkhaus Wallrafplatz (DE)