Caecilia's Iris


for organ

Composed for organist Alexander Lane (no relation)
Live recording by Alexander Lane

program note:

Caecilia's Iris was commissioned by the Eschler Music Foundation for organist Alexander Lane (no relation), and premiered in May 2012. Saint Caecilia is often depicted in art with an organ (among various other instruments). She is the patron saint of music, but also of blindness. Often in artistic depictions her eyes are painted with mysterious upward gaze, yet it seems unclear if this is a blind gaze one or one of intense spiritual focus. I can't help but also imagine the music from her organ wandering with ambiguous directionality. Sacred yet improvised; spiritual, but also impulsive. The modality of the piece also shifts and wavers, evoking musical textures of early music, but with a more contorted sense of harmony. The piece begins with a low-register melodic line (a solo for the feet), and concludes with a majestic chorale on the same theme. In between, there is a series of contrapuntal explorations of this theme, wandering blindly (or perhaps with intense focus?) through different styles and textures.

buy/rent sheet music:

Caecilia's Iris (digital or hard copy availabl)