Honors Program


Date of this Version

Spring 3-2018

Document Type



Bydalek, Lauren. Postcards from The Land of the Rising Sun. University of Nebraska-Lincoln. 2018.


Copyright (c) 2018 Lauren Bydalek


Postcards from The Land of the Rising Sun encompasses the knowledge learned during my time as an undergraduate music student. The three movements of the work combine theoretical and historical knowledge of music, narrative scoring, orchestration, and the creative process. Inspired by two months spent in Japan during the summer of 2017, the work attempts to depict complex emotions through music.

Three movements comprise the work: “Dare to Immerse,” “Fuji,” and “33 Million.” While all three movements share a four-note motive at some point, they all have vastly different narratives and sonic palettes. The ominous ocean waters near the city of Shizuoka, where I spent most of my time in Japan, inspired “Dare to Immerse.” This movement makes extensive use of dissonance, whole tone scales, and octatonic scales. “Fuji” is inspired by my climb up Japan’s tallest mountain. The movement uses chromatic motion and lyrical melodies, inspired by bitonality. “33 Million” is a very active movement, based off the city of Tokyo and its overwhelming amount of people and sights. The final movement makes extensive use of rhythmic ostinatos and the four-note motive, which runs through all three movements.