On Mount Sinai (2004)

On Mount Sinai (2004)

Poem for Symphonic Wind Band

  • Duration: ca. 17 minutes
  • Picc, 2 Fls, Ob, Bsn, P.Cl, 3 Cls, B. Cl, Shofar (ad libitum), 2 A. Sxs, T. Sx, B. Sx, 4 Hns, 4 Tpts, 3 Tbns, Bar, 2 Tbas, Str. Bass, Timp, Perc (5).

The performance of the poem begins with narration of the following scene from the Bible:

And it came to pass on the third day in the morning,
that there were thunders and lightnings,
and a thick cloud upon the mountain, and the sound of a shofar exceeding loud;
so that all the people in the camp trembled.
And Moshe brought the people out of the camp to meet with GOD;
And they stood at the foot of the mountain.
And mount Sinay smoked in every part,
because the LORD descended upon it in fire:
and the smoke of it ascended like the smoke of a furnace,
and the whole mountain quaked greatly.
And then the voice of the shofar sounded louder and louder…
…And all the people perceived the thunderings, and the lightnings,
and the sound of the shofar, and the mountain smoking:
and when the people saw it, they were shaken, and stood afar off…
…And the LORD came down upon mount Sinay,
on the top of the mountain…”
EXODUS 19 (16 – 19), 20 (15), 19 (20).

In 2004, M. Delman and the Petach Tikva Conservatoire Wind Orchestra premiered this work in Israel. They performed it again at the wind orchestra competition in Interlaken,  Switzerland, and then two  days later at the Mid-Europe festival in Shladming, Austria.
The evening after the performance  in Interlaken, M. Delman felt strong pain, caused by acute appendicitis. He was hospitalized and had emergency surgery.

We were sure that the performance in Shladming would have to be cancelled, but, two days later, M. Delman went on to conduct his orchestra at the festival!

Such was his strength of will and creative dedication!

Below is the recording from the premiere.

Petach-Tikva Conservatoire Symphonic Band
Michael Delman, Conductor
Festival Kfar-Saba (Israel), 2004

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