"Rahu's Rounds" for piano - Hugh Tinney
"Rahu’s Rounds" was composed in 1998 to a commission from the pianist Hugh Tinney, who gave it its premiere in November of that year in Duiske Abbey, County Kilkenny (Ireland).
According to the Sanskrit epic poem, the “Mahabharata”, the Hindu gods decided to concoct a batch of soma, the elixir of immortality. While it was being ladled out, the demons started battling for a taste of it and one of them – Rahu – disguised himself as a god and drank some. The Sun and Moon spotted this and reported him to Vishnu, who sliced off his head. However, he had drunk enough to enable his head to survive. Now he eternally chases the Sun and Moon across the skies and tries to eat them. Occasionally he catches and swallows one of them, causing an eclipse – but banging on drums and utensils helps to scare him into releasing them.