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John Luther Adams

Earth and the Great Weather (1993)
Work Notes
Libretto (English, Iñupiaq, Gwich'in, and Latin) by John Luther Adams; Iñupiaq translations by James Nageak and Doreen Simmonds; Gwich'in translations by Adeline Peter Raboff and Lincoln Tritt
Taiga Press (BMI)
Opera and Music Theatre
Sub Category
Operetta / Musical Theatre
Year Composed
1 Hour 30 Minutes
Solo Instrument(s)
4 Sopranos, 4 Altos, 4 Basses, 4 speaking voices (1 male, 2 female)
Alternate Orchestration
4 Sopranos, 4 Altos, 4 Basses, 4 speaking voices (1 male, 2 female); 4perc/ and digital delay
Programme Note
John Luther Adams Earth and the Great Weather (1993)
Earth and the Great Weather is a journey through the physical, cultural, and spiritual landscapes of the Arctic, in music, language, and sound. The text (in English, Iñupiaq, Gwich'in, and Latin) is composed of the names of places, plants, weather, and the seasons of the Arctic, as well as vocalise. Three drum quartets are interspersed throughout the work and are inspired by the elemental power of natural forces in the Arctic and by the ecstatic energy of Alaska Native drumming and dancing.

Preview the score:

  • Soloist(s)
    Dave Hunsaker, Voice; Amy Knoles, Percussion; John Luther Adams, Percussion; Robert Black, Percussion; Robin Lorentz, Percussion and Violin; Ron Lawrence, Viola; Michael Finkel, Cello; Robert Black, Double Bass;
    Michael Finkel
    New World Records:
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