On July 7, 2014 this piece was world-premiered at the Isidora
Zegers recital hall, Santiago, Chile by the Guitar Ensemble of
Enchanted Island is an octet for eight guitars. The piece was
inspired by the Yami tribe on Orchid Island off the coast of
Taiwan, especially by their aboriginal legends and rites.
Because of the boundless fantasy enlivened by the island's
mythological formation and the Yami's ancestral fables, this
piece is named Enchanted Island. The music consists of the
following five sections to depict Yami's legendary inception on
the island, worship of the ocean, and ceremonial rituals.
Overture: the Mythological Origin. The uninhabited island
is tranquil, mysterious, and abysmal. The ocean waves are
sometimes calm and sometimes fierce. As uneasiness fills the
air, a sealed wooden box drifts from the sea and runs
ashore. A god-created man comes out of a wooden box and
becomes the ancestor of the Yami people.
Song of the South Island: The music depicts a sunny
afternoon right after a rain storm. Fishing boats
sporadically dock by the shore, forming a beautiful picture.
Tribal people beat and sun-dry fishing nets, and hum a
melody that resonates through the air. The harmonics and
augmentations lay out the background for contrasting a
simple melody line of a recitative style, which further
develops with free-style counterpoint.
The Call of the Sea: The servants of the sea sing and
worship the ocean. This section is a transition and
variation from the previous section.
The Voyage: Yami people set sails for the sea at night.
They light up thatch torches to lure the flying fish into
the net. This section represents the wavy sea with a form of
stubborn notes, the appearance of the flying fish with an
intermittent melody, and the lighted torches with a free
flow of repetitive single notes. The music sketches out the
scene of the night fishing with torches.
Flying Fish Festival: The Flying Fish Festival is one of
the important festivals of the Yami. The flying fish is
regarded as a gift from the gods. In this annual ritual they
pray for peace, good harvest, and prosperity. This section
is full of passion and dynamics. The pulsing but irregular
rhythm leads the progression of the ritual. A climax is
reached in the end with uniformly executed rasgueado,
symbolizing the fulfillment of good harvest.