Clarice Assad

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World Premiere of LILITH Concerto For Piano & Chamber Orchestra

March 10 @ 3:00 pm - 5:00 pm

Sunday, March 10, 2024, at 3:00 PM, National Gallery of Art
Inscape Chamber Orchestra
Richard Scerbo, Artistic Director and Conductor

CONCERTO FOR PIANO AND CHAMBER ORCHESTRA

Commissioned by Thomas Baron

i. Spellbinder | ii. Forbidden Charms | iii. Unchained

Program Notes

Lilith is the most well-known female archetype, described in myths across millennia as either a dangerous demoness or a powerful goddess. Her plurality of forms across cultures mystifies yet fascinates – embodying the tension between mortal peril and divine feminine energy in endless symbolic rebirth.

Ancient Sumerian tales first paint her as an untamed sexual force. Medieval lore describes her as the Serpent of Eden’s Garden. European folk tradition presents her as a witch’s deity, the leader of the chaotic Wild Hunt, a hypnotic siren forever wandering in exile. Over time, she becomes Lamia devouring her lovers, Medusa deadly with but a single sidelong glance from her enchanted eyes, the quintessential femme fatale inconceivably intermingling desire and death.

To modern feminists, Lilith represents the fully liberated woman unbound by external chains of patriarchal suppression. In Jungian terms, she is anarchic primal Anima – the swirling chaos of repressed desires and unconscious fears, granted a form of seductive shadow. Luminously dark, her lingering mystique exists in the liminal space between base impulse and spiritual transcendence, never wholly safe but far too compellingly fascinating to resist.

This piano concerto pieces together refracted shards of Lilith’s rich legacy as both destroyer and muse by turns. Through three interconnected movements, her iconic phases and dualities are reborn on a fresh creative canvas:

I. Spellbinder – The opening movement conjures Lilith’s exotic allure – her unearthly beauty and captivating sensual appeal draw souls willingly into her orbit of mystery despite barely muted intimations of danger.

II. Forbidden Charms – Marked by profound wisdom borne of forbidden transgressions, this movement unveils occult insights from magical realms. Her charms come laced with peril for those who pursue their revelation yet cannot turn away once enthralled under her sway.

III. Unchained – The tempestuous finale witnesses Lilith’s wild unpredictability unleashed as she embraces chaos with untempered passion. Though eternally beguiling, her capricious spirit makes uneasy those now entirely in her seductive thrall, spellbound witnesses to her whims.

We gratefully acknowledge the commissioning patronage and visionary support of Thomas Baron, whose generosity and friendship I genuinely cherish.

Details

Date:
March 10
Time:
3:00 pm - 5:00 pm