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For When We Arrive for String OrchestraThe Woodlands College Park High School, Emmanuel Coraza
00:00 / 07:02

The idea for this music came from a piece I wrote a few years prior entitled There and Back. That work is a musical palindrome, with several themes that return in reverse order after a slower middle section. While writing, I felt as though there was something more to be said about the central "There" (the “slow” section) of There and Back. This material is the basis of For When We Arrive.


So often, we begin moving towards a place, event, or goal, but when we arrive, things often look different than we thought they would. What if the place we ended up was not what we originally envisioned, but we were able to find beauty in it just the same?


In For When We Arrive, the music seems to repeatedly almost arrive in a satisfying place. However, with each swell, we fall short of what we thought would be our destination. At m. 45, we seem to begin from where we started, trying our luck in a new key. And something is different this time…


Suddenly, the music gains some much-needed momentum while supporting a new melody. Perhaps this new melody, which we had never seen before, is the true destination?


At m. 66, we receive a taste of resolution as we begin to look back on where we have been. There is a sense of relief that we are on the right path, and a feeling of more to come.


The music finally comes to a satisfying arrival at m. 78. While the piece had been building around the material from earlier music this entire time, we now realize that it is a melody that we never saw from the beginning – one we had to discover along the way – that we had actually been waiting for all along.


For When We Arrive is the story of the beauty that can come from being open to other people, opportunities, and ideas. Questioning, being curious and honest, and sometimes altogether abandoning our plans, convictions, or beliefs can often result in the discovery of something wonderful...

PDF-Perusal Score

(not for performance use)

Original Photo courtesy of Casey Horner

For When We Arrive

For When We Arrive

for string orchestra and percussion and/or piano
(see perusal score below for full instrumentation)
Duration: ca. 7'
View the Chamber Winds Version here

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