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[#94] May 10, 2021

2012 | Wind Orchestra | Grade 5 | 35’-40’ | Symphony

of Swedish composer and conductor Daniel Börtz

Symphony No. 4 “In the Shadow of No Towers” by American composer Mohammed Fairouz is our Composition of the Week.

Written in 2012 and premiered at Carnegie Hall by the University of Kansas Wind Ensemble on March 26, 2013, under its music director Paul W. Popiel.

The symphony takes its inspiration from details in Art Spiegelman’s graphic novel of the same name and evokes the cataclysm of September 11, 2001, and its repercussions over the years.

It has a duration of 40 minutes and it is cast in four movements, all of them also titled after Spiegelman’s work.

I. The New Normal

II. Notes from a heartbroken narcissist

III. One nation under two flags

IV. Anniversaries

Symphony No. 4 calls for a standard wind ensemble instrumentation, including 6 percussion parts as well as amplified String Bass, Piano and Harp.

The music is on rental at Peer Music Classical.

Mohammed Fairouz is one of the most frequently performed, commissioned, and recorded composers working today. Hailed by The New York Times as “an important new artistic voice” and by BBC World News as “one of the most talented composers of his generation,” his large-scale works engage major geopolitical and philosophical themes with persuasive craft and a marked seriousness of purpose. Fairouz’s cosmopolitan outlook reflects his transatlantic upbringing and extensive travels. His catalog encompasses virtually every genre, including opera, symphonies, vocal and choral settings, chamber and solo works.

His principal teachers in composition have included György Ligeti, Gunther Schuller, and Richard Danielpour, with studies at the Curtis Institute and New England Conservatory. Fairouz has lectured and led residencies across the country at the Festival of New American Music and at Columbia, Brown, New York University and University of California at Los Angeles. He has served on the faculty at Northeastern University in Boston.


More on Mohammed Fairouz


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