“Whale Dive” is a series of short musical postcards inspired by observations of whales and their unique movements and abilities. The three movements may be performed together attacca or separately if desired.
The first movement “Surface” follows the massive creatures up from the depths and slowly into view above the water with a long rising theme. As the mammals begin to move about towards the surface, the passages become more intricate but always stay legato displaying the whale’s massive appearance but peaceful nature.
The second movement “Breach” transforms the theme into a fun multi-meter dance as the whales begin to jump and play. This movement uses the entire range of the tuba as the whales jump up and down and should be played as lightly and joyously as possible to show the carefree nature of the animals splashing around.
The third movement “Deep Dive” captures the dramatic yet graceful nature as the whales head back to the depths. The movement builds to several climaxes just as the whales arch their backs, dive down, and flash their tails before disappearing beneath the water in one last “farewell”.
Performers should be encouraged to add “whale noises” to the beginning or end of the written music. I hope this piece works to capture the spirit of these majestic aquatic mammals and remind us of the importance of protecting their natural habitats so we can enjoy their beauty for years to come.