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Symphony no.3 : (Supernova) : for orchestra

by Stuart Greenbaum (2017)

Work Overview

Symphony No.3 (Supernova)

I: 13 billion years of light

II: clocks of light tick down to iron time

The title of this symphony and its two movements are taken from the poem Supernova by Ross Baglin, which in turn reflects the birth of elements and the age of the known universe, and by extension the limits of our knowledge and existence. A supernova is an astronomical event that occurs during the last stages of a massive star's life, where its degeneration culminates in titanic explosion and destruction. The best current estimate of the age of the observable universe is around 13 billion years. As a massive star begins to die, it fuses lighter elements into heavier, releasing energy in the process. This continues until the star begins to fuse iron atoms. At this point it collapses upon itself, becoming heavier and hotter until it explodes in a supernova.

This symphony is dedicated to my father Geoffrey Greenbaum.

Work Details

Year: 2017

Instrumentation: Piccolo, 2 flutes, 2 oboes, cor anglais, 2 clarinets in Bb, bass clarinet, 2 bassoons, contra bassoon, 4 horns in F, 3 trumpets in C, 2 trombones, bass trombone, tuba, timpani, percussion (4 players), harp, grand piano/celeste, strings (min.

Duration: 25 min.

Difficulty: Advanced

Contents note: I. 13 billion years of light -- II. clocks of light tick down to iron time.

Dedication note: Dedicated to Geoffrey Greenbaum

Written for: University of Melbourne Symphony Orchestra

First performance: by University of Melbourne Symphony Orchestra, Richard Davis — 24 Sep 17. Hamer Hall, University of Melbourne

Composer's no: GRT 194


Performances of this work

24 Sep 17: Hamer Hall, University of Melbourne. Featuring University of Melbourne Symphony Orchestra, Richard Davis.

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