Chorus of Satellites

Laurence Osborn

  • Duration

    8 mins

  • Year of composition


  • Number of performers


  • First performance

    Recording: James Weeks and EXAUDI

  • Commissioned by
    Written for Juice Vocal Ensemble


Chorus of Satellites was initially inspired by beautiful passages from Carl Sagan’s Cosmos which describe the moons of Jupiter, their orbits and physical and chemical characteristics. I was struck by the fact that many of Jupiter’s moons are in fact named after the lovers of Jupiter in Classical Mythology. The stories of these nymphs and naiads are at turns violent, beautiful, and bizarre, and almost always involve some sort of physical transformation. Chorus of Satellites attempts to use sound as a means of constructing complex illustrations of the moons Io, Callisto and Ganymede and the stories of their corresponding characters in Classical Mythology. During the piece, sounds, phonemes, and fragments of text are flung between singers as they move through the performance space, combining sonic and verbal depictions of the moons themselves and the stories and transformations of their corresponding characters.

Full Scoring:

3 Female Voices, doubling tam-tams

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