Movement and Music: UMD Symphony Orchestra’s Prelude to the Afternoon of a Faun

  • November 20, 2012
  • By Cara Fleck     
An orchestra dances to itself.


Conceived by James Ross
Movement Design by Liz Lerman

On May 4, 2012, the UMD Symphony Orchestra (UMSO) performed Debussy’s “Prelude to the Afternoon of a Faun” from memory, with movement design by choreographer Liz Lerman.

Movement is an inherent element of music-making; yet, its impact goes largely unexplored in the orchestral setting. UMSO’s performance of “Prelude to the Afternoon of the Faun” explores the connection between movement and music, specifically, how that connection facilitates communication and a colorful, nuanced performance.

The choreography in this performance reflects the moods and imagery associated with Debussy’s work: the sensory experiences of a faun as he awakens from an afternoon nap.


Link to Full Source: The University of Maryland