UCF composer Stella Sung premiered her new piece, “Oceana” on August 15 at Boston’s Hatch Shell. The 14-minute piece, which incorporates ship horns, seismic blasts and the calls of dolphins, humpback whales and porpoises with string and wind instruments, was performed by Boston’s Landmarks Orchestra, under the baton of Christopher Wilkins. The music was paired with images from videographer and photographer Annie Crawley who documents mammals underwater.
Sung wrote the piece to call attention to the increasing amount of noise by sea traffic that interferes with the conversations of the sea mammals. “[The animals] also have sort of like traffic signals, ways of communicating just under water. When those patterns and the signals get interrupted, the traffic flow also gets interrupted so to speak. This is an important work for me as a composer … to highlight this problem,” Sung said in an interview with WBUR.
Read the story and listen to the full interview at www.wbur.org/artery/2018/08/15/landmarks-orchestra-whales.
“As concert music, it is consistently engaging. Lush and brimming with melody, Sung’s music has the broad sweep and direct emotional appeal of a film score.” —Boston Classical Review
(Photo courtesy Annie Crawley.)