words and music by david lang
after genesis, chapter 1
I wanted to make a piece about the creation story but I didn't want to highlight one religion's or culture's narrative over another.
It was important for me to try to find something universal, something present in all stories, or common to all cultures. I hit upon the idea of making a kind of checklist of everything that needed to be created to get the world to this point, without each individual culture's stories or myths or exoticisms. I went back to the first chapter of Genesis, to see what I could get out of my own culture's story, and I stripped away all the descriptions, adjectives, connectors and motivators. All that is left of Genesis in my text are the nouns, leaving a dispassionate list of everything created, in the order in which it is mentioned.
— David Lang
evening morning day
was commissioned by the Brooklyn Youth Chorus, Dianne Berkun, Director.
evening morning day (for SSA)