Kathleen, As She Was
- Performer(s) Cynthia Green, oboe; Peter F. Collins, harpsichord
Rockwell Kent’s 1924 journal, Voyaging, is an account by the illustrator of Moby Dick, of his personal voyage southward from the Strait of Magellan in his boat the Kathleen. My fantasy for oboe and harpsichord (keyboard), is inspired by Kent’s woodcut of his boat which he titled “Kathleen, As She Was.” The Kathleen (named for Kent’s wife) is shown in her original state, a life boat, aboard the larger frigate Lonsdale. My composition, Kathleen, As She Was, explores the notion of a smaller idea liberated from a larger idea, developing and changing through the suggestion of direction.
The piece centers on a grace note gesture “a” to “b.” This musical gesture is kin to the tugging of a boat at its mooring, a metaphor for the musical idea tugging to free itself from the larger idea.