I've been working my trousers to the bone, editing and preparing the second and third volumes of my new "Cochrane's Company" trilogy for publication in June and July respectively, and formatting the first volume for print publication. It's an immense amount of work, not only to try to get their elements uniform across all three volumes, but trying to catch as many errors as possible and fix them before publication. (Sadly, in the first volume, "The Stones of Silence", I've already found - and/or been alerted to by readers - half a dozen mistakes. I've just corrected them all, and a new edition will be going up next week. Those who've bought it already in the Kindle Store will find their editions automatically updated, provided they've turned on the automatic updates feature. That's another reason to delay the print edition of each book by a few weeks: it gives my readers time to alert me to any mistakes I may have missed, so I can correct them before they're irretrievably on paper.)
Be that as it may, all three books are set in space: so I figured some music around that theme might be appropriate. Here's Gustav Holst's suite "The Planets". This live performance, during the 2016 Proms Concerts, is by the National Youth Orchestra of Great Britain and the CBSO Youth Chorus, conducted by Edward Gardner.
When "The Planets" was written, between 1914 and 1916, Pluto had not yet been discovered, so it was not included. The original suite ended with "Neptune, the Mystic", which "concludes with a wordless female chorus gradually receding, an effect which Warrack likens to 'unresolved timelessness ... never ending, since space does not end, but drifting away into eternal silence'." However, this rendition includes an additional piece, "Pluto, the Renewer", written as an add-on to the suite by Colin Matthews. The elements are, in order:
Mars, the Bringer of War 0:00
Venus, the Bringer of Peace 7:15
Mercury, the Winged Messenger 15:09
Jupiter, the Bringer of Jollity 18:58
Saturn, the Bringer of Old Age 26:42
Uranus, the Magician 35:32
Neptune, the Mystic 41:20
Pluto, the Renewer 49:17
Lovely, stirring music. One does wonder how much influence the First World War (which was raging during the period in which Holst composed this suite) had on its themes and musical imagery. I suspect it was more than a little.