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Pentatonic Connections with Michael Thomas

At Doris McCarthy's Fool's Paradise a pentatonic experience reveals itself.

PENTA. Five. While here living as an artist in residence for two months, I've discovered my desire and craving for nature. The land here is beautiful. Overlooking the Bluffs, I've been here over 1 week now, and totally inspired. Interestingly enough, I'm often inspired by the sounds of the world to compose music - the sounds of the city, people, melodies, sounds around us. While here, however, it's quite. It's totally the opposite. How as a composer do I find inspiration in quiet? What sounds come out of this quiet? Where do they come from? How do I interact with this quiet? How am I changed by it? How do I express myself in it. The glistening snow, the bare trees, yet full of life speak to me. Lake Ontario over the Bluff, the changing sky, the sun, the wind and all the beauty of the Home where I'm staying all lend to this tremendous sense of quiet.

So here it is that I am, taking in a deep breath pondering and letting the quiet encompass me. What will emerge, who's to tell? In my wonderful morning coffee chat with Mike Thomas, with whom I sing in the Elmer Iseler Singers, we shared stories of how music played a role in our lives and how hard work and commitment to the dream can lead us to opportunities where we fluorish.

Fool's Paradise, is a palce to fluorish. Through this silence, through this calm, through this lens of Winter Landscapes the music will flow, God willing. As I spoke with Mike about an idea for a pentatonic composition, he immediately expressed:


2, SKY




These 5 elements of the experience here stand out. What can I do with these? How do they manifest in the music? What do they say to me. If I was a pentatonic melody how would I sound as I reflect on my relationship with these 5 elements. In all these elements I see the Divine. What does that sound like and how does that express itself in these and through these elements.

The pentatonic experience is one that has captured my attention recently and I'm curious about it's sonic expression here at Fool's Paradise.

Other connections to five:






Peace be upon them and their progeny:






So here it is that I sign off for the day. And express gratitude for this 'five' theme to reveal itself. Let's see where it goes. I ask of you five elements to reveal to me your sonic heart that may manifest in sound and choral splendour.


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