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979-0-57036-686-6 Voyage to the Moon – Score Available at MusicRoom Buy now (£16.95)
979-0-57036-687-3 Voyage to the Moon – Parts Available at MusicRoom Buy now (£44.95)

Description

Written for The New Music Players and Orchestra of Sound and Light for concerts in London and Sussex, with funding support from the RVW Trust and Arts Council England.

Voyage to the Moon is a continuous score of approximately 14 minutes with outer fast sections and a slower inner section of a dream-like character. The work is inspired by a film entitled Le Voyage dans la Lune (1902), written and directed by Georges Méliès.

The film itself reflects 19th century interests in science and discoveries, as well as the science fiction of Jules Verne. At the same time it expresses literary fantasy and some critics point out an underlying critique of colonial adventuring. The plot describes a group of astronomers who determine to fire a rocket to the moon including a handful of explorers. They reach the moon (famously landing in the moon's face) and then encounter a strange race of aliens, with whom they argue and destroy. The return to earth involves a dramatic descent, a plunge into the ocean and then celebratory dancing.

I wanted to respond to this film because it inhabits a surreal and dream-like space, and uses an idiosyncratic visual language, but also speaks directly to today's audiences. The score was conceived as part of a tour to schools in Hastings, Brighton and Lewes. School audiences may be provoked to discuss science questions and to consider ideas about the moon and attitudes to exploration in 1902.

There is also a version of this piece for orchestra, entitled Le Voyage dans La Lune.

© Ed Hughes, June 2015

Details

Categories
Duration
14 minutes
Premiere
The New Music Players, University of Sussex, 24th September 2015
Scoring
1 Flute, 1 B-flat Clarinet, 1 Piano, 1 Violin, 1 Violoncello
Composition date
2015

Recordings

Symphonic Visions - music for silent films by Ed Hughes Clare Hammond, New Music Players, Orchestra of Sound and Light, Richard Casey 1st February 2018

Performances

17 June 2016

Attenborough Centre for the Creative Arts, University of Sussex, Falmer, Brighton

Orchestra of Sound and Light
Ed Hughes, conductor
with students from Dorothy Stringer High School, Brighton

25 September 2015 The Warehouse, Theed St., Waterloo 25 September The New Music Players, Richard Casey (piano)
24 September 2015 The University of Sussex The New Music Players