The Ocean Between Us
- The Prow (SATB divisi & piano)
- There Is No Sea (SATB divisi, piano, strings, & crystal glasses)
- So Much to Seek (SATB divisi & piano / SATB divisi, piano, & strings)
About the work
In the wake of grief, The Ocean Between Us explores life after the storm, with songs of joy, sorrow, and renewal.
From the composer during the premiere of The Ocean Between Us:
“During this past Spring, Jon and I discussed collaborating and creating a new work for choir. As some of you may know, Jonathan Talberg is not only an exceptional conductor, but a wonderfully expressive poet. At the beginning of summer, he handed me a collection of ocean poems, written for his dearest friends and family in the wake of his father’s passing earlier this year.
A week later, my own father passed away.
Mired in grief, losing my father was like losing a piece of myself. I immediately turned to Jon’s Ocean Poems for comfort, and in doing so, found that my feelings had been given words; and in words, music.
Throughout the summer, I set these words, and with each poem I set, I found myself healing. The second movement came first. Titled There Is No Sea, Jon’s words brought me back to the airport – waiting for that flight to my father’s home that I never thought I’d take – and expressing the grief I had no words for.
The next was The Prow: fueled by Jon’s memories of dolphins playing in the wake of his own mentor’s boat, the piece reconnected me with joy. And last came So Much to Seek, a beautiful poem Jon had written for his mother, expressing how in the limited time we have, we owe it to ourselves to live life to the fullest.
These three pieces create The Ocean Between Us: the ocean between my father and I; between Jon’s father and his; the ocean of grief that separates us from being ourselves; and the ocean between who we were and who we are now. Through joy and through pain, Jon’s texts serve as a reminder that with our three score and ten, we should explore while we can.”
Dedicated to and commissioned by Jonathan Talberg and the Bob Cole Conservatory Chamber Choir.
In loving memory of Timothy “Tiger” Hazzard.
Premiered by the CSULB Bob Cole Conservatory Chamber Choir, October 2018 at Los Altos United Methodist Church, Long Beach, CA.