Interviewed about his experience witnessing the test detonation of the first atomic bomb, veteran David Hemsley recounted "If I was looking at you now, I would see all your bones." I was immediately struck by the evocative potential of the notion, this simple and powerful line resonating deeply with me. Beyond the historical even Hemsley was describing I was taken as to how the meaning could refer to an expression of sincerity, from on to another. The intimate ability of a human to witness the unseen depths in each other, to see into another.
This concerto is my response to the dual narratives borne in Hemsley's remark. The first movement see's the sailors on their ships, cowered at the unearthing experience of bearing unwitting witness to the birth of the nuclear age. Shifting perspective and an uncanny feeling is encapsulated in the second movement, the feeling of seeing into other people and penetrating layers o knowing. Originally scored for jazz big band, the Berceuse now forms the central movement of the concerto. This third bears out the curious synchronicity of both experiences, the breach of personal bodily barriers, as if a grown man had caught fire and walked right though you.
I - Adagio, Allegretto
II - Lento
III - Allegro