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Guiding the Spirit Home

for mixed chamber sextet

Year:  2007   ·  Duration:  11m
Instrumentation:  flute/piccolo, clarinet, bass clarinet, piano, trombone, cello, double bass

Year:  2007
Duration:  11m
Instrumentation  flute/piccolo, clarinet, ba...

Jeff Lin

Composer:   Jeff Lin


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The ceremony of `Summoning the Soul’ is a Chinese tradition that has lasted thousands of years and is still a special and important event in some regions of China today.

The tradition is based on the belief that to be at peace the body and the soul of a family member must be brought home. If a member of a Chinese family dies in a distant place, the other members of his or her family have the responsibility to go to that place to bring their loved one home. When they arrive they must hold a ceremony to summon the soul and guide it back to its home. Many Chinese believe that a soul left in a distant place may be lost in the wilderness forever.

This piece is in two sections; these don’t depict the process of the summoning, but are a personal reflection on this tradition.

Contents note

two sections

Performance history

13 May 2007: Performed by the Karlheinz Company cond. John Elmsley; Music Theatre, University of Auckland, Auckland