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Michael Gordon

Publisher: G. Schirmer

The Unchanging Sea (2016)
Work Notes
Available for performances after May 2018.
Red Poppy
Soloist(s) and Orchestra
Year Composed
21 Minutes
Solo Instrument(s)
Unavailable Explain this...
Programme Note
Michael Gordon The Unchanging Sea (2016)

The Unchanging Sea: Gordon/Morrison interview
Composer Note:
When we started talking about this piece, Bill showed me the D.W. Griffith film. It is a story that captures a long relationship human beings have had with the sea. Regardless of how the oceans have changed over millions of years, our relationship to the sea has very much remained the same — this big, turbulent, dangerous, mysterious body of water. I tried to make an environment that is very ocean-like, transferring the sound of the waves and the rhythm of the waves to the piano and to the rest of the orchestra — slowly rolling, slowly increasing; the winds come in, the brass comes in, then the strings, and the whole orchestra builds up, but always in waves, always swelling and dying away. At times I try to build up to a very turbulent, massive sound, and at times get a certain serenity and peacefulness, but still swelling, still the waves coming in and going out.

— Michael Gordon


  • 13 JAN 2018
    Leipzig, Germany
    MDR Sinfonieorchester
    Niklas Sivelöv, piano; Kristjan Järvi, conductor
  • 19 MAY 2017
    Rotterdam, Netherlands
    Rotterdam Philharmonic Orchestra
    Tomoko Mukaiyama, piano; Bas Wiegers, conductor
  • 29 OCT 2016
    The Unchanging Sea European Premiere
    Vilnius Festival
    Vilnius, Lithuania
    Lithuanian State Symphony Orchestra
    Robertas Servenikas, conductor
  • 13 MAY 2016
    The Unchanging Sea World Premiere
    Seattle International Film Festival
    Seattle, WA
    Seattle Symphony
    Tomoko Mukaiyama, piano; Bill Morrison, film; Pablo Rus-Broseta, conductor

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