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9. Jack the Ripper, 8.13

Jack the Ripper (composed August 2011) is an orchestral work, cinematic in its orientation, that is played in a torrent of fury and heavy-handed, dense, low chords.  Scored for full Orchestra, this highly vigorous orchestra composition sets the backdrop for the sordid tale of chase scenes for the legend of Jack the Ripper. Through contrasting, brooding moods of intensely fierce, dark orchestrations, furious cascading waves of tumultuous and wildly exotic melodic gestures and flourishes paint a lavish and impactful stark and wrenching effect.

The piece is a dramatically and thoroughly professional setting that works in presenting three highly energetic and sometimes bombastic suggestive moods through long stretches of score. It lives in a luridly surreal musical world that hangs gloomy stillness and primal turns into savagely attacking dissonances and bursts of fury. It uses traditional tonality without falling into clich`, providing orchestration in unique transparency and power that skillfully set the foreboding tone to booming climaxes and churching orchestra. It is a slasher score punctuated with penetrating brilliance and careful surrealist touches.

*This piece was made possible in part by the Helene Wurlitzer Foundation.


Background History

The unresolved mystery of Jack the Ripper, the nickname given to an unidentified serial killer of several brutal murders of prostitutes in impoverished areas of the Whitechapel district of London in the late 1800s has captivated authors, filmmakers and historians for over one hundred years. The extraordinary surgical character of the murders gained widespread media attention as the letters with kidneys from the alleged victims were mailed to Scotland Yard as the increasingly grotesque and vicious murders were never solved.

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