Live Performance at Mt Wilson Observatory: July 7th 2019
Lyrics and Music by Danaë Xanthe Vlasse
Hila Plitmann, Soprano
Sangeeta Kaur, Soprano
Robert Thies, Piano
Recorded: Allegro Recording Studios, Burbank CA
Recording Engineer: Nicholas Tipp
Surrounding in stream.
Trident of ancients
Borne of life marine
For times Damascene.
In myths eons winged
Of cold opaline.
Forever a cloud
Of hurricanes shroud
This heart crystalline
For mass celestial
Of matter unseen
In dark velveteen.
Hail falls diamond
On this galleon
In silence serene.
Explanation of text and select composition elements:
This is in a musical Round to portray moons orbiting.
“Cerulean” is the deep blue color of the planet.
14 moons orbit Neptune.
Moons orbit in a “stream” = a reference to rivers which flow into the sea (as a lead to the next stanza).
Neptune was named in honor of a god in Antiquity; he ruled the sea with a trident as his weapon.
This deity was invented by sea-faring peoples.
"Damascene" is an ancient city, and also means “times of discovery” (which is appropriate for honoring the birth of astronomy in the Ancient civilizations).
"Translucent" = Neptune’s rings are barely visible.
"eons winged” = another reference to Antiquity.
“Pleistocene” because the planet is in an ice age.
“opaline” = the color of opal.
The piano here builds a storm of sound.
Neptune is always covered in fierce wind-storms.
Hear the "shimmer" of crystals in the piano part.
Neptune's core is solid, surrounded by water and pale blue gases.
It is the last planet in our solar system and our gateway to the stars.
Relating to this massive universe beyond.
“Matter unseen” = what scientists call “dark matter” floating like invisible clouds in the darkness of space.
The storms on Neptune at one time were thought to actually create diamonds! Listen to the piano representing hail made of shimmering diamonds.
Neptune is adrift in an endless sea of silence out on the edge of the galaxy.