Cameron Park Suite for Oboe and Strings by Carlos Colón
I- Brazos de Dios (Arms of God) & II- Río Perdido (Lost River)
III- Act of Faith
IV- Miss Nellie’s Garden
V- Jacob’s Ladder
VI- Heaven’s Declaration
Conducted by Carlos Colón – Oboist: Eurídice Alvarez
This piece was composed for this program; but the music builds on a previous composition Heaven’s Declaration, commissioned by ABL a few years ago, and inspired on EBB’s reference to Psalm 19 on her poem Aurora Leigh:
“Earth’s crammed with heaven,
And every common bush afire with God;
But only he who sees, takes off his shoes—
The rest sit round it and pick blackberries.”
In a sense, the music is a theme and five variants, which develop sort of backwards. The full theme is in the last movement; but the all the movements derive from the original piece.
The movements all take their name from trails or landmarks at Waco’s Cameron Park. I have always been intrigued by the name of the river that goes through it: Los Brazos de Dios, or the Arms of God. One story tells that Spanish missionaries gave it this name after Wacko native Americans showed them hospitality by guiding them to its waters, when the missionaries had come to the end of their resources.
I sense that all the names in each short section weave an economy of ecology and theology that I am not able to explain yet.
I am thankful for the assistance of Mexican composer David Pérez in the orchestration of this piece.