The Sleeping Lion

by Tony Manfredonia

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about

'The Sleeping Lion' is a work based upon a poem provided by my wife, Maria. Depicting a portion of her struggle with anorexia nervosa, I decided to create a "conversation" of sorts between the speaker and the saxophone. In doing so, I demonstrate that words are only a single perspective on expressing emotion.

Interpreting poetry into motivic ideas is what drives the piece throughout its six mini-movements. Each movement begins with a read-through of a stanza, with the conversation between music and spoken words following suit. Ultimately, my goal is to share Maria's journey, all while opening your eyes and ears to two different perspectives of the same story.

credits

released December 20, 2016

Tony Manfredonia - Composer
Maria Manfredonia - Poet

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about

Tony Manfredonia Petoskey, Michigan

Tony Manfredonia is an award-winning composer and orchestrator living in Petoskey, MI, providing a multi-layered and sensory experience through colorful orchestration and warm melodies. With performances and readings from chamber ensembles, such as Apollo Chamber Players, to large-scale ensembles, like the Pittsburgh Symphony Orchestra, Tony’s music has been played across the nation. ... more

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Track Name: The Sleeping Lion: for solo saxophone and spoken voice
Fiends inside my head
Feeding on my brain
Banging against my head
Chewing my mind dead

There are wolves in the mirror
Biting on my flesh
A pile of bones in the mirror
Sunken eyes, only clear

Vibrance faded to grey
What was once is now gone
Shivering in the grey
Identity slipping away

Numbers mask the suicide
Diversion skewing truth
Years go on as suicide
Beneath death’s wing, I hide

A fracture in the night
Shielding head in fear
Fiends scatter into the night
Courage, beseeching me to fight

A lion awoken
What was once is not yet lost
Rage awoken
Vengeance for what was stolen

Distant roars, calling up
Sinking fangs, dragging down
Struggling to stand up
A fire, about to erupt

Wolves clawing at my back
Mocking, howling, bloodthirsty
Weighted paws on my back
Surrounded for one last attack

Enough is enough!
Once the enemy is recognized
When a lion is starved enough
It will face a pack, no matter how tough

Fiends inside my head
Poking at my brain
Whispers in my head
Ignoring all that’s said

A woman in the mirror
Flesh traced with scars
Tired eyes in the mirror
All the lies, now clear

Light gives way, another day
Lion returned to slumber
His smile on an autumn day
Splashing color into a world of grey

Love combats the suicide
A desire for life’s truth
Anorexia is not worth its suicide
Within a sleeping lion, I now hide