HWS Commissions New Work for 35th Anniversary

HWS Commissions New Work for 35th Anniversary

“Because you have been faithful to the People and true to your gift,
you shall find the colors you are seeking.”

-Excerpt from The Legend of the Indian Paintbrush, as retold by Tomie dePaola

This quote is the inspiration behind Peter Sciaino’s newest work, Sound Paints the Sky. Throughout the process of writing this piece, Sciaino found himself coming back to a specific pair of images that ultimately provided the inspiration for the score. Both of these images are ever-present in the Native American legend of the “Indian paintbrush.” In this story, a young artist desires to paint an awe-inspiring sunset that regularly fills his sky but lacks the colors to do so. One day, out of the grey clouds, a vision of his tribal predecessors tells him to use his given talents to serve his people and he will accomplish great things.

Sciaino makes this analogy to music: “Sometimes the sky is grey from our individual perspective, even so it’s hard to imagine a colorless horizon on any given day when you share it with passionate and creative people. The music communicates this concept beginning with the initial up-tempo section; complete with divergent, short and scattered (however melodic) motives. These segments eventually evolve into more bold and unified themes, the first of which occurs in the brass section. As the piece evolves further, the scattered themes return and are layered in ways that make for textures that are very cohesive despite their contrasting pace and beat division. This celebration of diverse unity takes place in the abstract each and every time the HWS rehearses or performs. The musicians bring only the colors they have available to them at any given point in time and then work toward a cooperative form of vivid expression that represents and inspires all who share in it.”

“Writing for the HWS has been a thrill!  When Matt Paterno asked me about it originally, I was very excited as I know many members and consider them to be friends and colleagues.  I also knew that I could write some challenging material seeing has how it is such a strong group.  I was inspired by the great spirit of the HWS which I have witnessed firsthand through my relationships with many members, attending concerts and teaching in the community where it is based.  It was easy to find inspiration in writing this piece considering all of these things.”

Peter Sciaino is a passionate music educator and composer of spirited band and orchestra music for all levels. Peter writes and arranges music for marching bands, jazz ensembles, and chamber ensembles in addition to his work with symphonic groups. He also serves as a clinician and guest conductor and accepts commissions for original work. He is currently published with C.L. Barnhouse Company, C. Alan Publications, Carl Fischer Music, Excelcia Music Publishing, and Wingert-Jones Publications and will be published with Alfred Music in 2021.  Additionally, Peter has had music selected to Bandworld Magazine's Top 100, J.W. Pepper’s Editors' Choice and various state assessment lists.

Peter holds a BM from Syracuse University in Music Education and an MA from New York University in Music Composition. An instrumental music teacher at Whippany Park High School for over 20 years, he directs both the concert band and jazz ensemble while co-directing the marching band and teaching AP Music Theory.

“Happy Anniversary to all members past and present. May this work live up to the beautiful spirit of the Hanover Wind Symphony”. – Peter Sciaino