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Gustav Holst wrote The Planets in 1913. Conspicuous by its absence from his symphony is the planet earth. Someone on the forum pointed out that The Planets is not about astronomy but astrology, so who is the god/goddess of earth?

Holst died in 1934 a mere 18 years before JFK's famous speech avowing to land a man on the moon before the end of the decade. Six years later three astronauts, Borman, Lovell, and Anders, orbited the moon., sending back pictures of the earth-rise over its surface. We saw earth for the first time as a tiny blue orb against the blackness of space. Our planet stands out as the most beautiful, fragile, and habitable place in the universe. The astronauts, inspired by the sight, read from Genesis 1: In the beginning God created the heaven and the earth....

Holst may be kicking himself, that he omitted the greatest planet of all. So here is my humble attempt to extol the forgotten planet, Ode to Earth, Apollo 8.

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This piece was not ready for prime time, not because I was careless or lazy but because I was tired of it. I figured it was good enough for government work, but apparently not good enough for some members of the forum.

Re: Ray's comment, the theme sounded mechanical. I changed rhythms and stepped up the tempo a few beats to tie the lines together.

Mike's , too repetitive and poor mix. I nixed two iterations of the theme and wrote in a string section in minor to contrast to the theme. I corrected some mix problems and too many mistakes to recount.

H.S.Teoh's, the ending was lame. I added three measures to the ending. Hope these changes are sufficient because I'm calling this piece done, over, finee. Sometimes when a piece becomes boring or frustrating, it is best to put it away for a week and come back with fresh ears and eyes to make the final edits, (or just let the forum do the editing.)


Hi Lawrence,

I liked the variations and the new bits, the end in particular with the wind flourish is effective. The horns are a little better, but I'll put the lack of realism down to the sounds. I know you are done with this now, but re the horns, give them more rests from 143 on. The same goes for the clts. There are plenty of places where you can give horns and clts a quaver or more rest and not upset the music, in fact it would help in places. If you really need a constant horn line, consider dividing it up among 3 players with overlapping notes.

The flute solo is lovely and is enhanced by the lightening of the background. 

I still found the predictable rate of harmonic change to be a bar to full enjoyment, but all in all for me it is improved and despite reservations, an enjoyable listen.....of course the most important issue here is wether or not you felt as though your revisions based on critique here have improved the piece, because thoughts here are just others opinions.

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