2022 – for string quartet – 7:30
World Premiere: Sep 5, 2022, Church of the Holy Trinity, Toronto
Sep 18, 2022, Royal Conservatory of Music, Toronto
I had envisioned the concept and expressive intent for Hope many months before I started composing it on March 1, 2022. However, the time period when I started composing happened to coincide with Russia’s military invasion of the Ukraine. I have to be honest and say it was challenging to compose a piece on the theme of hope when the stories of suffering of many Ukrainians filled our newsfeeds. Between this, the pandemic, crippling inflation and climate change, what can a human being on this planet feel any hope for? Despite all this, I am personally still filled with the spirit of optimism for our plights. What other choice do we have? The external strife of the world must never overwhelm our inner spiritual goal of happiness, goodness and positivity.
Despite all that there is to feel pessimism about, my goal with this composition is to allow the listener to take a moment, breathe, ponder and then feel…hope. Over the years, my creative output has often been inspired by a lot of serious topics, especially related to climate change and other social justice issues. I have sometimes found that composing these works was cathartic because it helped me better understand the issues. But did that outcome include feeling hope for the future? That somehow the collective human experience could get better? Often, the answer was no. So, I think of this composition as a general counterbalance to those previous creative results. I have always felt strongly that music has an important role in bringing awareness and provoking change to make the world a fairer and more just place. But the world’s history of challenges has reminded me that music’s ability to give listeners hope for the future is also vitally important.
Dedicated to every person on this planet who yearns for a hopeful future.
– Frank Horvat