Lights on Inanna

(2016 – 2017) © 2017 Esin Gunduz.

For an ensemble of five players: oboe & English horn, trombone & bass trombone, viola & violin, cello & electric cello, percussion (vibraphone & marimba, Chinese drums, crash & cymbal) and recorded voices
Contact for the score!

“Lights on Inanna” is based on the texts of three ancient Sumerian tablets that were inscribed for their Goddess Inanna and I read these texts as the Sumerians’ cultural/psychological projections on women.  Throughout my compositional process, I performed, recorded, and analyzed selected phrases from these tablets.  I studied the semantics, spectra, and the sensory experiences that they bring about and molded this data into instrumentation and orchestration.  My works generally explore the union and opposition of energies which “Lights on Inanna” points to by acknowledging three -still present- cultural/psychological projections on women.

On three selected Sumerian tablets, the Sumerians relate to their Goddess Inanna as the:

  1. Adored object
  2. Destructive power
  3. “One of us”!


  1. …an-zà-śè maḫ-àm… …as lofty as the horizon… 00:18
  2. …ku-ku za-lag ge-eş ĝar… …to turn darkness into light… 04:56
  3. …ur-re ca-mu-u-hul-le… …to make you joyous… 10:42

Performers on this recording:
Megan Kyle, oboe, English horn and reeds
Ben David Aronson, trombone, bass trombone
Leanne Darling, viola, violin
Jonathan Golove, cello, electric cello
Steve Solook, percussion
Recorded March 2017, UB, Buffalo NY

Mix: Henry Birdsey

Esin Gunduz is a new music composer and a vocal performer whose work investigates the types of energies at play among all beings (connection / tension, opposition / union), exploring these energies as sensory experiences and sound.  In her works, the tessitura in human voice is translated into instrumentation and orchestration.  The landscapes built from recorded-voice samples surround the instruments creating other-worldly atmospheres.

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