“Into the Mystic Earth” Flex Band Commission Consortium

“Into the Mystic Earth”
Flex Band Commission Consortium

Project Scope

Instrumentation: Flex Band (5 parts, with percussion)

Difficulty: Grade 2-2.5

Duration: 4-4.5 min.

Buy-in: Organizations $100
              Individuals $25

Deadline: January 15, 2024

Delivery: by January 31, 2024
Score and parts will be made available to the general public for purchase in May 2024.


Organization level ($100)

  • Institution and Director name listed in the score
  • Score and parts delivered via PDF
  • All consortium performances are considered premieres and may be labeled as such in their concert programs. There is no cutoff date for these performances.
  • Video or live* chat session with the composer. Limited to the first 5 ensembles to join! 1 spot remaining
    *live for organizations in/near McHenry County, IL

“Into the Mystic Earth” Commission Consortium – Organization


For organizations participating in the commission consortium for a new, grade 2-2.5 flex band piece entitled “Into the Mystic Earth”

Out of stock

Individual level ($25)

  • Name listed in the score
  • Score delivered via PDF
  • Group video chat if 5 or more individual supporters sign up!

“Into the Mystic Earth” Commission Consortium – Individual


For individuals participating in the commission consortium for a new, grade 2-2.5 flex band piece entitled “Into the Mystic Earth”

Out of stock

Current supporters

Thank you to the supporters of this project!

  • Heineman Middle School (Directors Pam Jorgensen and Rick Rohde) – Commission Lead
  • Creekside Middle School (Director Amanda Storer)
  • Winston Campus Junior High (Director Hannah Menich)
  • Fremont Middle School (Director Brent Burger)
  • Jamie and Walter Wasylenko

Program notes

“Into the Mystic Earth” is a tone poem that explores cave systems, drawing inspiration from Mammoth Cave, Luray Caverns, and even a video game.

The piece starts slowly, finding your way into the cave. As you descend, the melody follows suit, traveling through the lower instruments.

Once you reach the depths of the cave, you come across a magnificent reflection pool, inspired by Dream Lake in Luray Caverns (Luray, VA). The voices reflect each other, with percussion effects throughout.

But things take an ominous turn. There is a shift in tonality, signaling a darker tunnel ahead. You take tentative steps forward. Then a few more. You come to a fork in the path – do you go left or right? You make a choice and end up in a “maze of twisty little passages, all alike **.” You feel like each choice you make leads into further confusion and chaos. Until, finally, you see a different path that leads you out of the maze.

Coming out of the maze, you find yourself in a massive room – a room that feels too big to possibly be underground. As someone wrote in a letter in 1810 regarding the Rotunda at Mammoth Cave: “… [A]t the termination of those narrows you are ushered into one of the most sublimely beautiful and picturesque amphitheaters in the world.” The fanfare and pageantry of the final theme reflects the splendor of the Rotunda.

Finally, you reflect back on the opening theme to finish our cave journey.

Maze of Twisty Little Passages?

In 1976, Will Crowther released a text-based computer game, called “Colossal Cave Adventure,” or simply, “Adventure.” It was inspired by the Bedquilt section of Colossal Cave in Kentucky, just 1.5 miles away from, and connected to, the famous Mammoth Cave. In this game, the program narrates your progress through the cave, with the player typing text replies such as “Go east,” “Enter building,” and “Get lamp.” Further in the game, the player inevitably receives a message stating “YOU ARE IN A MAZE OF TWISTY LITTLE PASSAGES, ALL ALIKE.”

As someone who played this game quite a bit as a kid (and never made it past the maze), I couldn’t pass up this opportunity to pay tribute to “Adventure.”