Lumen (1990)

Allan Gordon Bell

Allan Gordon Bell (b. 1953) was raised in Alberta, ad received most of his musical education in western Canada. He also holds a degree in Philosophy, a fact which often shapes his music. He has lived and worked at the University of Calgary since 1983.


Level: High School

The program notes give some insight into the poetic ideas embedded in Simulacra. In this work, Bell uses a clear, strong set of chords of double-stopped chords to separate each section of the music:

Design a “composition flow chart”. With a partner, listen to the piece several times. Draw a flowchart of the main ideas of the piece, using both musical language (ie., staccato passages,) and non-musical language (ie., sounds like an eagle cry). The chords shown above enter at different points throughout the music, and help to reveal the form and structure of the piece. On your listening chart, use the chords as a signpost – every time they enter, there is something new coming in the music. Try to make it fit on one sheet of 8.5 X 11 inch paper.