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Luz Última continues my interest in Spanish as a language for choral settings, and this work is the second in quick succession using the poetry of Juan Ramon Jiménez (1881-1958) - the other work being The Bridge of Love.
The poem is an evocation of dusk and the dying light - the sun has gone and the last light lingers in the woods. Musically the work begins with a long crescendo on the word 'luz' (light), fanning out from a central D and gradually including each of the choirs in canon. The piano makes its first appearance nearly half-way through the piece as the initial climax subsides, and subsequently accompanies with arabesque-like figures in the upper part of its range. A second crescendo culminates in a massive E flat major chord, and the music settles finally into the key of F major. Throughout, the music is very static harmonically, with rich full textures created from overlapping simple harmonies.
Written for and dedicated to Choralation, from Westlake Girls and Westlake Boys High Schools, Auckland, and conductor Rowan Johnston