|Fore After Ever
For alto saxophonist and percussionist ; 2011 ; Duration ca. 13 minutes 20 seconds
During the past couple of years I have developed an increased fascination with the performance and compositional possibilities of music conceived for two accomplished soloists, a medium that I believe can be quite distinct from chamber music for three or more players or for soloist with accompanist. Fore After Ever was conceived as an interplay between the two players, who develop independent thematic material intended to highlight some of the unique idiomatic qualities and colors provided by their instruments.
Particularly in the outer movements, I sought to set into motion two expansive, soloistic musical threads, each with its own defining rhythmic and melodic qualities, sonorities, colors and formal designs, while modulating the development of both threads so that they also intertwine and articulate points of convergence and exchange -- a type of broad scale counterpoint that is "phrase against phrase," or "passage against passage" rather than "note against note." At the same time each part is influenced by, and responds to, developments in the other part.
Additionally, the composition of this work gave me the opportunity to explore the lyrical capabilities of the saxophone and of pitched and unpitched percussion, as well as extended performance techniques for the saxophone, including multiphonics, the altissimo register, "growl" tones and other types of play/sing sonorities, various types of slap tongues, timbral trills and quarter tones.
Today, more than at any earlier point in Western music history, composers and audiences are blessed with an astonishing abundance of technically and musically gifted instrumentalists and singers, a proliferation of musical talent that has been particularly explosive in instruments such as saxophone and percussion. And for this reason, among others, compositions for two soloists is an area I hope to pursue further in the coming years.
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This work was premiered by saxophonist Dannel Espinoza and percussionist Christopher Clarino on a concert of my music in Eastman's Kilbourn Hall on March 15, 2011. For performance information on this work please send e-mail to the composer at email@example.com
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