Atlantic Adventures is an exciting new work for wind quintet – a six-movement suite about an epic pirate ship voyage across the Atlantic Ocean in search of treasure.
The opening movement Haul Wind! starts as a jolly chanty that signifies the beginning of the voyage but which later becomes darker: a warning, perhaps, of the dangers that lie ahead. At the very end of the movement we hear the ship’s captain emerging from his cabin and the next movement – Captain Peg Leg and His Parrot – depicts him limping around yelling out orders, of course with his parrot squawking happily on his shoulder.
During the voyage the captain shares his dream of finding lost treasure with his pirate crew, who, as we hear in Heartache Hearties, long to see their loved ones again after many days at sea. The pirates are too frightened to sleep after the captain shares more stories in Midnight Misty Waters, telling his crew how his leg was torn off by a monster that lurks in the midnight water. This movement ends with a lullaby that soothes the pirates’ fears as they drift off into the comforting world of sleep.
The penultimate movement Deep Sea Treasures portrays the ship passing directly over the submerged city of Atlantis, where valuable treasure is hidden away. In Waves of War the pirates have found their loot but then find themselves under attack by another ship! An epic battle ensues, but our pirates emerge victorious!
About the composer
Richard Ross Hembree was born in Victorville, California in 1986 and grew up in Visalia, CA where he began studying the french horn at the College of the Sequoias. He then transferred to California State University, Fresno and it was there that he began writing music for wind ensemble.
In 2009, he was a finalist in the 2nd International Frank Ticheli Composition Contest for his grade 2 piece entitled Dreamcatcher. He has since written 17 works for band and orchestra as well as five woodwind quintets. In 2013, Richard graduated with a Master of Arts degree in horn performance. Alongside his composing career he also freelances in and around the Central Valley of California.