Looking-Glass House Program Note

Looking-Glass House depicts a scene from the first chapter of Lewis Carroll’s Through the Looking Glass in which Alice becomes enthralled with reprimanding her cat for her bad behavior. This soliloquy becomes the platform in which Alice begins her daydreaming revelry that transports her through the other side of the looking glass. I sought to capture some of the playful, yet menacing, qualities of Alice’s interaction with herself by means of her feline companion.  Thus the piece meanders through varying moods via unexpected (or sometimes nonexistent) transitions as a way of embodying, in a rhetorical sense, the hallucinatory nature of Carroll’s prose. This work is the first in a cycle of works each with different instrumentation and each based on a different chapter of Carroll’s masterpiece. (See also The Garden of Live Flowers for flute, clarinet, cello, and piano)

Excerpt by participants and members of soundSCAPE (2009) – Tony Arnold – soprano, Avi Avital – mandolin, Brian Hulse – conductor:

Looking-Glass House_P1