The Skies Above Lexington Market

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Wind Ensemble / Concert Band – 10 1/2 min [completed 2006]

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Instrumentation: Picc, Flt 1/2, Ob 1/2, Clt 1/2/3, Bass Clt, Bsn 1/2, ASax 1/2, TSax, BSax || Tpt 1/2/3, Hrn 1/2/3/4, Tbn 1/2/3/4(bass), Euph 1/2, Tba 1/2, Dbl Bass || Pno, Hrp || Timp, Perc 1/2/3/4 (Chimes,Glock,Vib,Wind Chimes,Snare,Sus Cym,Cr Cym, Tam-Tam,Bass)


At the time, I was living in an apartment just a few blocks away from Lexington Market, one of Baltimore’s most historic attractions. Throughout that year, I had taken pictures of Lexington Market from my apartment window at various times of the day with various weather phenomena. These photographs served as the inspiration for The Skies Above Lexington Market.

The first portion of the piece is devoted to the sunrise the numerous beautiful mid-day skies. The sunrise remained an enchanting experience despite me facing west instead of east. While the sun was never visible, shadows advanced and retreated as light slowly filled every dark alley in the city.

The piece then advances beyond calm skies and begins to portray the more aggressive side of Mother Nature. Moments of beauty and moments of severity are exchanged until eventually being overtaken by “the storm”. This particular event saw constant lightning strikes with thunder echoing through the high-rises of Baltimore. As hail began to gather outside my window, people were sent dashing through the streets to seek immediate shelter. The intense storm eventually subsided, leaving a tranquil and serene cityscape with no urban dwellers in sight.

Finally, the sun would set in the west over Lexington Market. It was a magnificent display of beauty, the sun providing an indescribable array of color throughout the sky. There was often no singe “set” sky during these sunsets… with every second, the sun fell just a bit lower, painting a slightly different picture using a slightly altered color palette. It was noticed with every blink of the eye and did not cease until the starless night sky of Baltimore emerged.

Recording: April 23, 2006, Students of Peabody Conservatory, Anthony Rivera (conductor)