Josiah describes his composition
‘The Pilgrim’ as a journey of development and emotion, encompassing three key stages of emotional state: from the opening sounds which are full of anticipation and uncertainty, through to a passage of disillusionment and frustration, then moving on to a concluding stage which reintroduces the positive elements of the opening optimism, yet closing quietly, symbolizing an inner peace and contentment at the end of the musical journey.
The composer’s emotive approach to the creation of the work embraces a wealth of passion, anguish and enlightenment. Through his use of imaginative melody, themes and harmonic texture, Josiah has represented a collection of powerful emotions. Essentially non-programmatic, the piece opens in a contemplative manner, building with enthusiasm, and first introducing the use of bells and bell effects as a musical metaphor which is used throughout the piece to signify the journey’s destination.
As the sentiment continues, the music evolves in to an Allegro Furioso section, opening up a strong sense of frustration. At this section’s climax, the symbolic use of the bells is reintroduced to create an over-tone of hope and purpose, although this does not last long as they fade into the Misterioso Molto Rubato section.As the melodies and harmonies develop onwards, ‘The Pilgrim’ evolves into a more reflective phase, reintroducing the sounds and motifs of the more strident opening.
This closing section symbolizes the realisation that everything needed was already available to The Pilgrim, but travelling the journey, confronting and overcoming all of the challenges was the only route of discovery – peacefulness prevails, bringing the work to a close with a sense of contentment and enlightenment.’The Pilgrim’, highly emotive in its creation, offers a wealth of musical imagery.
Even to the uninformed listener, this fascinating, powerful and beautiful work stirs and stimulates a variety of emotional reactions – offering each listener an opportunity to apply the music to their own journey, their own personal pilgrimage.