Fractured Light is inspired by the imagery of sunlight “fractured" into rays of light that slowly shift, shimmer, and sparkle. The piece is centered on a descending six-note motive heard first in the trombones at the beginning of the piece. As the piece progresses, this motive is gradually expanded and "refracted" through various harmonies, timbres, and textures. The initial ominous trombone theme evolves into a series of lyrical solos for the saxophones, oboes, and horns as the orchestration and harmony shifts kaleidoscopically around them. Eventually the trombones return to the foreground, but with new material: a brighter, optimistic chorale-like melody that propels the piece to its first major climax. However, the energy of the climax is quickly subdued, and the piece launches into a brisk tempo as the lyrical solos return, now set against a starry and shimmering percussive background. From this point forward, Fractured Light unfolds as a dialogue between constantly evolving thematic transformations of the opening motive, spanning a wide breadth of emotional qualities from apprehensive to foreboding to joyous. Towards the conclusion, the chorale melody returns to carry the music to its radiant conclusion.