Wounded Angel (San Antonio Aguas Calientes, Guatemala)
Tarahumara Pilgrimage (Norogáchic, México)
Threshold of Incense (Chichicastenango, Guatemala)
Tornado (Lake Titicaca, Bolivia)
These four pieces were inspired by photographs in Flor Garduño's collection, Witnesses of Time. Although Garduño's work is extremely varied, she is best known for her scenes of Latin American life and landscapes. As I lived in Central America and Mexico for six years, these wonderful photos have a special place in my heart.
Wounded Angel shows a Guatemalan man, obviously Mayan, holding a wooden statue of an angel, which is missing its right wing. Tarahumara Pilgrimage shows a group, in indigenous dress, in a processional which is both spirited and dignified. Some of them have drums, which is echoed in the music. Threshold of Incense is taken at the entry to the Santo Tomás Church in Chichicastenango, a beautiful and mystical town in the Guatemalan highlands. The church is one of the most revered Christian sites in the Mayan world, and was also where the Popol Vuh, the sacred book of the Mayas, was discovered. The scene shows incense mingling with the morning fog. Tornado shows a waterspout over Lake Titicaca in Bolivia.
Witnesses of Time was commissioned by my friend and colleague at the University of Louisville School of Music, Paul York, and is dedicated to him. Paul gave the premiere performances of Witnesses of Time in March of 2004. He recorded it for my CD, Witnesses of Time (Centaur Records CRC 2816). It will also appear on a CD he is recording for Centaur of new cello pieces he has commissioned.