Things that are blue, things that are white and things that are black.

for piano/electric piano/prepared piano with large ensemble

Larry Goves

Logged-in user discounts applied
Log in to get discounts (now or at checkout)
Ask us about multi-copy choral discounts


for piano/electric piano/prepared piano with large ensemble

Ask about this work
Composer Larry Goves
Year of Composition 2010
Duration 31'30"
Forces pf/epf/, cl/bcl, vc, va, hn, vla, 20vln, elec
Categories (all composers) ,
Catalogue ID ce-lg1ttab1


“…Everything we see, everything we touch – everything in the world has its own colour… Take blue for
example, he says. There are bluebirds and blue jays and blue herons. There are cornflowers and periwinkles.
There is noon over New York. There are blueberries, huckleberries, and the Pacific Ocean. There are blue devils
and blue ribbons and blue bloods. There is a voice singing the blues. There is my father’s police uniform. There
are blue laws and blue movies. There are my eyes and my name. He pauses, suddenly at a loss for more blue
things, and then moves on to white. There are seagulls, he says, and terns and storks and cockatoos. There are
the walls of this room and the sheets on my bed. There are lilies-of-the-valley, carnations, and the petals of
daisies. There is the flag of peace and Chinese death. There is mother’s milk and semen. There are my teeth.
There are the whites of my eyes. There are white bass and white pines and white ants. There is the President’s
house and white rot. There are white lies and white heat. Then, without hesitating, he moves on to black,
beginning with black books, the black market, and the Black Hand. There is night over New York, he says.
There are the Chicago Black Sox. There are blackberries and crows, blackouts and black marks, Black Tuesday
and the Black Death. There is blackmail. There is my hair. There is the ink that comes out of a pen. There is the
world a blind man sees…”

From Ghosts, the second book of The New York Trilogy by Paul Auster

This piece was written for the London Sinfonietta as part of their Blue Touch Paper scheme.

First performance: 3 June 2010 at the Queen Elizabeth Hall, London. André de Ridder (conductor), Sarah Nicolls (piano), The London Sinfonietta,