2005 marks the 100th anniversary of the death of Jules Verne, and the event inspired Peter Graham to write a musical tribute to the author described as the "father of science fiction."
Journey to the Centre of the Earth is one of Verne's best known works. The novel takes the form of a sequence of diary entries by Axel, nephew of Professor Otto Lidenbrock. The pair follow coded instructions in a old document guiding them to Iceland where, together with their guide Hans, they enter the open crater of an extinct volcano Snæfells and pursue a trail to the centre of the earth. There follows hair-breadth scapes and ventures perilous as the intrepid explorers encounter a vast interior world.
Peter Graham has taken some of the key scenes from the book and set them as a sequence of symphonic extracts. The subtitles are; (I) Snæfells, (II) Descent, (III) The Wonders of the Terrestrial Depths, (IV) The Day of Rest, (V) Lost in the Labyrinth, (VI) The Whispering Gallery, (VII) Rescue from the Abyss, (VIII) Battle of the Antediluvian Creatures and Ascent, (IX) Homecoming.
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