The Final Judgment
for Full Orchestra
3 Flutes (Piccolo), 3 Oboes (English Horn), 3 Clarinets (Bass Clarinet), 3 Bassoons (Contrabassoon)
4 Horns, 3 Trumpets, 2 Trombones, Bass Trombone, Tuba
Timpani, 3 Percussion, Piano, and Strings
The Final Judgment is a programmatic work that draws its narrative from chapter 20 of the book of Revelation. In this chapter, we see two distinct scenes described. First, an angel of Heaven binds up “the dragon” (Satan), for one thousand years. After this, in a second scene, a vision of Heaven, is shown. Here, we see a throne room, and those seated on the thrones are given the authority to judge over the living. But this scene is interrupted by a move back to the first scene, where the thousand years have ended, and Satan is let loose to wreak havoc on Earth. However, fires from Heaven will come down and consume him and his armies. This moment transitions the listener back to the second scene, where the Book of Life is brought before the thrones and the final judgment takes place based on what is found in the book.