The House of Empty Chairs

Description

Work titles:

  • The house with the open door
  • Black and white Christmas

Commissioned by: Antonia Ringborg, for her Foundation to raise money for refugees.

Goal: Christmas Music to help organize concerts to collect funds for refugees.

Arrangements: 2 piano’s, bassoon / 1 piano, bassoon, alto clarinet / 1 piano, trombone, alto horn / 1 piano, bassoon /


People that inspire

The work and life of lyricist Jochen Klepper. Some-one who decided not to become a refugee. His life story shows us, that some-times it’s better to live as a refugee, then stay home.


Musical Inspiration

  • Es ist ein Ros entsprungen,
  • Gloria in Excelsis Deo
  • Stille Nacht
  • Alle jaren weder
  • Deck the Halls
  • Oh come, Oh come, Emmanuel.
  • The hopeful sound of The New World by Dvorak.
  • “Der Weihnachtswolf”. A former work for Wind-band.

Poetry as inspiration.

Busoni and Hemmingway, combined in this poem:

This Child


This child, it floats on air.

It’s feet won’t touch the earth,

This child feels beauty,

forthcomingly takes risks.

is disciplined to tell the truth.


This child knows no gravitation

they hang weights upon it.

This buoyant creature is scarcely allowed to leap….

It is often wounded,

It is sometimes destroyed.


This child set out the Dimensions of Sacrifice.

For it’s joy is to follow

the line of the rainbow,

and to break sunbeams with the clouds.

(Busoni, Hemmingway, me)


Video Inspiration

Black and White Christmas. Experiment: Repeat the video, contrast the music, keep the melodies and orchestration.

Form Studies used for this composition

Two visual art-forms inspired the FORM is this work:

  1. The timing and images of this video, made by sand-artist Immauel Boie. Immanuel explores the connection between the Christmas Story, “A child is born”, and the Easter Story, “A Son is lost”. The direct visual drawing from Christmas child into Easter adult by a few strokes in the sand is extremely powerful.
  2. Paper-art: Collage. Where existing images are cut out and all the pieces form a new image.
  3. Experimenting with the effect of music on visuals by repeating the video with different music. I called this experiment Black and White Christmas, trying to write Dark Music to Light images and vice versa.
The House with the Empty Chairs

I develop my music in a phantasy world, which you can explore on the Map of Miracles. In this world, there is an eternal Christmas market. In the middle of that market, next to the giant Christmas tree, is a house: The house with the empty chairs. The door of this house is always open, there is always a place to sit down at an enormous Christmas Banquet.

This House is the center of Christmas, this is the House of Hope. The Music and video illustrate the Story of this House.


The only one, who is always there, is the lonesome Christmas Wolf . A soft snow white warm animal, resting near the fireplace. His theme is Heard in this Christmas Music, as are many more we already know and some we still have to recognize. (Der Weihnachtswolf, wind orchestra, 2018).

“Weihnachts Wolf”, first proofreading by wind orchestra Musik Akademie Marktoberdorf.
Test: Adding the “The Christmas Wolf” to the House of Empty Chairs



Arrangements and sheet-music

Instrumentation: Harp, piano, F-tuba/euphonium

The house of Empty Charis, Piano, Harp and Euphonium.

Harp_Take1

Download

Score Take1

Download

Instrumentation: 2 piano’s, 1 bass-instrument

Instrumentation: 1 piano, Bassoon

Instrumentation: 1 Piano, Bassoon, alto clarinet

The House of the Empty Chairs, Piano, Bassoon, alto clarinet. A. Wolters 2021

Instrumentation: 1 Piano, Trombone, alto horn.