Footprints on the Sands of Time (시간의 모래 위 발자국)
The subject of ‘time’ has remained an elusive figure in my music. When I was commissioned by Chuljin Kim to write this piece, I elected to depict the elements of time with which I have become most familiar. As anyone with ambition can likely relate, it is all too common for me to become consumed by a project on which I am currently working. This fixation often results in a recurring pattern where I overwork myself and ignore other parts of my life, which is then followed by self-assurance that I will have more time later to take care of that which was neglected. Ultimately, I regret and dwell upon the foolish nature of my decisions before beginning the cycle anew. The desire to leave a mark on the world can be a great motivator, but if it is not tempered with care then this passion can tear away the fabric of your self.
Footprints on the Sands of Time can be divided into three larger sections, and each section represents one of the aforementioned elements of my personal struggle with time. The beginning of the work is frenetic; the overburdened stage of the work process is shown through high-energy, driving rhythmic patterns. As the opening section collapses, a slower and more reflective passage begins. The second section is essentially a false sense of self-assured calm that concludes with a dissonant acceleration into an angry and aggressive final section. Unrelenting in its energy, the music pushes toward a fast and powerful end.
“Lives of great men all remind us
We can make our lives sublime,
And, departing, leave behind us
Footprints on the sands of time;”
Excerpt from “A Psalm of Life”
–Henry Wadsworth Longfellow