program notes by composition > E > The Eighth Candle

The Eighth Candle

Steve Reisteter

The Eighth Candle is a prayer and dance alluding to the story of Hanukkah. This work begins with an extended hymn-like section followed by an exciting dance of celebration.

The feast commemorates the victory of the Maccabees over the Syrian-Greek tyrant Antiochus over 2,180 years ago. Legend has it that after the battles were won there was only enough oil for the ceremonial lights to last for one day, yet by some miracle the oil lasted for eight days. Hanukkah is celebrated by the family in the home, rather than in the synagogue. In modern times candles are lit, one for each day of the holiday, prayers are recited, then the feast and merrymaking begin.

Steve Reisteter is a contemporary American musician and composer from the Lehigh Valley area of Pennsylvania.

Last updated on December 28, 2016 by Palatine Concert Band