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Cortes, MichaelSymphony No. 1 “The Galilean Satellites”
MM, University of Cincinnati, 2010, College-Conservatory of Music : Composition
Symphony No. 1 "The Galilean Satellites" was written from 2008 to 2009. These four moons, discovered in 1610 by Galileo Galilee are very unique objects in our solar system. Europa is one of the smoothest objects in the solar system and has the best chance of containing possible life. Ganymede is the largest moon in the solar system and to this point is the only moon that has its own magnetic field. Io is one of the most geologically active objects in the solar system and contains many volcanoes. Callisto is one of the most heavily cratered objects in the entire solar system. As you can tell, each of these moons is very different so I wanted to try to make each movement unique on its own, but at the same time I felt it was important to do something to unify all of the movements together somehow because these moons, although very different from each other, are all part of the great discovery of Galileo Galilee. In addition, Europa, Ganymede, and Callisto are all believed to contain a liquid ocean beneath their surface. When listening to the music, a very familiar slow motive will play, which is my portrayal of the possibility of life. At the very end of the entire work, you will hear ideas/motives from all of the previous movements. The electronics in this piece use not only software synthesizers and edited sounds created in MAX/MSP, but there are real sounds taken from NASA that was actually recorded through data received from space equipment that were visiting these moons from outer space.


Mara Helmuth, DMA (Committee Chair); Mike Fiday, PhD (Committee Member); Joel Hoffman, DMA (Committee Member)




Symphony; Galilean Satellites; pipe organ; band; moons