Though he once auto-ironically claimed that the textual component of Cosmogony could just as well be taken from a telephone directory, the fact remains that he quoted classics of literature, philosophy and science, as well as the Old Testament. The piece contains quotations from Nicholas of Kues’ On Learned Ignorance, Copernicus’ On the Revolutions of the Celestial Spheres, Lucretius’ On the Nature of Things, the Book of Genesis, Ovid’s Metamorphoses, da Vinci’s On the Element of Air, Giordano Bruno’s On Cause, Principle and Unity and On the Infinite Universe and Worlds, as well as the words of space explorers Yuri Gagarin and John Glenn and a fragment of Sophocles’ Antigone.
This choice of texts creates unavoidable intellectual and emotional associations, and there exists a strict expressive relation between texts and music exemplified, for instance, by the use of the “bright” chord of E flat major containing “sol”) on the word “Sun” – another name for the note G, in the whole chord consisting of E flat, G and B flat.
Composer and pianist “Blue” Gene Tyranny, who followed the action of this work without a score, ascribed specific dramatic or illustrative meaning to its various musical events. In the music, Tyranny heard the Big Bang, light being created, solar wind, expressions of admiration and veneration for the created world, cosmic exploration, the launch of a rocket, even the sounds of space reaching an astronaut’s ears…In its own day, Cosmogony was simply “in”. Now it constitutes a distinct memory of that time. Especially in the historical recording featuring Jerzy Katlewicz and the effusive Stefania Woytowicz, the piece seems to transgress the intransgressible limits of (sonoristic) expression…