Paradise of the Deluge

9 min.


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Program Notes
Paradise of the Deluge is a work meant to reflect on the political and social dangers of weaponized nostalgia. This occurs when authoritarian movements justify their power by manipulating the public through a whitewashed and idealized version of the past, to which they compare the perceived chaos and evil of the current times. While this has been seen in an uptick in authoritarian populist movements across the political spectrum globally, nostalgia has long been a favorite weapon of tyrants. In this work, I set about to portray this idea in a rough ABABA form. The music immediately propels the listener into chaos, offering no respite until the B section. At first this provides relief, but through extended techniques and uncertainty of tonality and musical direction, it is discovered that this section is no more comforting than the last. These two ideas begin as disjunct in the first AB, but in the last ABA they start to merge, and while the end of the piece is not conclusive in any traditional sense, it aims to communicate the idea that the greatest hope is to be found in making the most of the present.
Recording Notes
Composed for and premiered at the Texas New Music Festival 2023
Ensemble Name
Meg Griffith