Dark Life of the Night Girl (2009/2015)
Purchase version for Narrator and Concert Band
Purchase version for Narrator and Orchestra
Instrumentation: Originally scored for Narrator and Orchestra; transcription available for Narrator and Concert Band
Premiere: May, 2015, UW Fox Valley Concert Band, Thylias Moss, Narrator
Commissioned by the Ann Arbor Symphony Orchestra. The text was written by Thylias Moss, Mac Arthur award-winning author and professor emeritus at the University of Michigan.
Dark Life of the Night Girl is a story about a little girl with a rare skin disease in which exposure to the sun would be fatal. Through her story, we learn how to embrace challenges, how to thrive in spite of limitations, and how to find beauty in the darkest of places. Here is a small sample of the text in the opening of the piece.
“It is night because the Night Girl comes outside. If it were daytime, she would not come out. It is not safe for her in the daytime; light destroys the skin she was born with. She’s seen mosquitos rise above a moonlit puddle like the animated dots of a small vortex, waiting to be connected. She has seen more stars than most people who favor the one sun.
When it is safe for her to come out, parks are closed, and public swimming pools. The movies she’d want to go to are not playing. The museums, zoos, aquariums, and shops she’d like to visit are not open. When she window shops, she sees her reflection on the windows. She tries on clothes by seeing her face on top of a mannequin’s face.
She celebrates the darkness.”