Kami – Sun and Storm

Mainwood, Val

About the work

A kami is a Japanese Shinto deity. Kamis take on responsibility for different aspects of the earth’s functioning. The goddess of the sun is Amaterasa. There are stories of her constant battles with the god of Storms, who is called Susanowo. The story is really commenting on the necessary tension between the creative and destructive forces of Nature. The electronic music provides a savage elemental force, to which the orchestra responds and interacts. The four solo players represent Amaterasa, who becomes overwhelmed by the elements. A solo piano stalks through the work as a mysterious, unidentifiable force. There is a peaceful, yet ambiguous conclusion to this highly dramatic work.

Technical notes

This piece of music is designed for players of all abilities and for any instrumentation, so that absolutely everyone can be included in some way, whether or not they read music. (If there is a need for parts for instruments which are not included, the composer is happy to oblige). Ideally, it is for large forces of about 60, but it would work with 40 players. The piano quintet is suitable for strong players with solo experience. The tutti encompasses all ranges. Percussion includes only instruments which are generally available, or which can be improvised. The electronic music is available on tape and CD. and has clear instructions on how to proceed.


score & parts

Sorry, Not Available




Large Ensemble


electronic piano quintet and orchestra, DC, 1 disc operator, perc: Tibetan cymbals, large wind chimes, claves, drum(s)


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