Balanos, a monody for organ and fixed media, is an extension of my earlier vocal quintet, hamadryads, and, like that earlier piece, makes use in the generation of its pitch material of Josquin’s Déploration on the death of Johannes Ockeghem, Nymphes des bois. It follows Karya for Disklavier (2011) and Skye for marimba and accordion (2013) in a series of pieces taking Josquin’s lament as a starting point, each based on a particular ‘reading’ of the source text and taking the title of one of the eight types of hamadryad named in the Greek mythological tradition. Balanos is named for the hamadryad who was bonded to the oak, a wood often used in organ cases.
Balanos was written for Lauren Redhead and lasts a little over seven minutes.
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