Tuesday, January 20, 2015

Minimalist Study for Winds and Percussion

Last fall I composed a minimalist study for WesWinds. They performed it on Tuesday 2 December in Crowell Concert Hall, under my direction. But at the last rehearsal (shortly before the concert), they recorded it straight through. There was also the recording during the performance, of course. Just for kicks, when we were editing, Mike Arafeh (at my suggestion) synchronized the last chord in both performances. We played it back. We like this thickened up version, and hope you will too. Enjoy!

The lean, clean version (from the concert) will be uploaded soon.

You will hear various repeated patterns, overlaid according to various processes, no two of which are the same. The flutes and clarinets have one pattern; the oboes another; the trumpets have repeated notes, as do the saxophones (different ones, of course); the low brass have a chorale-like phrase; and there are three related but distinct percussion patterns — one for clangorous mallets, one for drums and one for timpani solo (four drums). The patterns accumulate, of course. Perhaps this piece should go on longer, but I am very pleased that it doesn't! At somewhere between five and six minutes, perhaps it's more of a Post-Minimalist Study than a minimalist one.

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