Clarice Assad

(2020) Lilith


Commissioned by Tom Baron

Lilith is presumably the most well-known female archetype, described as either a demon or a goddess, portrayed in different cultures as a vicious killer or powerful female force. The plurality of forms in which she has taken in several cultures across time and space further mystifies her character in my imagination. It is the reason why I was inspired to write a piece dedicated to this fascinating life force.

In this piece, I strive to acknowledge many of these roles ascribed to Lilith in myths and legends, from the 3rd millennium BCE to the present day. In ancient Sumerian folklore, she appears as an untamed sexual force; in medieval tales, she appears as the Serpent in the Garden of Eden. In European folklore, we meet her as the Witche’s Sabbat’s supervising goddess, as the Wild Hunt female leader. She is identified as Medusa, who kills men with a deadly gaze; she is Lamia who devours her lovers. In feminist ideology, Lilith is the symbol of a liberated woman. Circling back to the Archetypes idea, in Jungian psychology, she represents the Anima. The dark, unconscious part of the Self.

Musically, there is a vast universe to be explored. It has been an incredible journey reading, learning, and portraying my impressions of this character into this piano concerto. The piece is written and dedicated for my friend Inna Faliks, and commissioned by a long time friend and supporter of my work, Tom Baron.

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