The goddess of the sun has hidden herself in a cave. No one is quite sure why. The other Japanese gods and goddesses ask Uzume, the goddess of joy, to coax the sun back out into the open. Uzume dances: the sun appears!
Belgian composer, Piet Swerts, was taken with this story of joyful dancing that banishes the darkness. His "Dance of Uzume" (2005) received a raucous performance this past March at the Ordway as the North Dakota State University (NDSU) Wind Symphony and faculty soloist Matthew Patnode celebrated the opening of the NDSU School of Music.
Sunny, joyful, and a little crazy sounding, "Dance of Uzume" is in this week's Regional Spotlight.