Text by Robert Feng, others
An Oratorio about nuclear war in 7 movements.
Annihilation's concept began shortly after receiving the false nuclear missile alert in Hawai'i in 2018 about 8 hours after it was sent after deboarding a plane to New York. This oratorio depicts a fictional scenario in which several world powers engage in nuclear war, killing billions of people in a matter of hours. Annihilation comes in several waves in a nuclear war; first with the annihilation of ourselves and others as human beings as we justify the usage of nuclear weapons. (Pre-Emptive Strike) The second is the actual strike of the missiles in the world's most populated cities. (Annihilation) The third is the prolonged effects of fallout and nuclear winter that comes after the strikes. (The Great Filter) The fourth is the death of the last humans who forget the mistakes of the past and provoke the nuclear waste sites we leave behind. (whimper) And finally the 'Second Death' of our species, where not a single name will be remembered and any intelligent species that comes across our remains can only wrongly speculate what even the simplest tools and objects were used for. (Museum)
While most of the text in this work is original, I have chosen to use found text to further support the larger movements. The text from the Emergency Missile Alert System to Hawai'i acts as the catalyst of the oratorio, as if in an alternate timeline, something like this or the Cuban Missile Crisis ended in full out nuclear war.
The second excerpt is from the Book of Revelations (8:10-11) depicting a bright star falling from heaven and poisoning the water upon which it lands. whimper contains both original and found text; one depicting the descendants of the surviving humans now worshipping a nuclear waste site as a holy relic, and the other using text from Sandia National Laboratories' warning to future generations to never lay a hand on that very site.
The ideal setting for this oratorio is a semi-interactive, multi-media experience where the audience may experience images and video of what is depicted in the work all around them.
This work is not meant to scare. It is meant to sober.
Pictured: Sandia National Laboratories' warning of a nuclear waste site,
to be understood by any person regardless of language
an oratorio for the end of days
8:07 Saturday, January 13 2018
Emergency Alert System - Hawai'i
The Great Filter
Sandia National Laboratories / Original Text