(commissioned by the Oasi Trio + The Post Cortona Premieres Project)
About “Different Lenses”
“Different Lenses” was composed in 2019 and commissioned by Oasi Trio as part of the Post-Cortona Premieres Project. This piece is scored for violin, clarinet (Bb), and piano.
I first met the members of Oasi Trio (Claire Niederberger [violin], Kathryn Vetter [clarinet], and Magnus Villanueva [piano]) at the Cortona Sessions for New Music in Cortona, Italy in the summer of 2018. We quickly became friends and shortly after the Sessions, they formed the Oasi Trio. Once the Trio decided to begin commissions and tours, I was fortunate enough to have them ask me to compose a piece for them.
“Different Lenses” is arranged in five short sections, with each depicting a scene of what you might see through each different type of lens.
“BOULDER CANYON, HOOVER DAM” was commissioned by Danielle Gonzalez after hearing an early version of my marimba solo “산 • San • Mountain.” “BOULDER CANYON, HOOVER DAM” was originally written as a component of Danielle’s “Natural Beauty” show – a multimedia concert program featuring percussion music and promoting environmental protection and sustainability. While visiting Hoover Dam in the summer of 2019, I decided that it was the perfect combination of clean energy, humankind’s relationship with nature, industry, and American history to serve as the theme for this composition.
Structurally, “BOULDER CANYON, HOOVER DAM” is based on the 1955 Bureau of Reclamation documentary “The Story of Hoover Dam” which is shown to tourists visiting Hoover Dam. I condensed the 28 minute documentary into a 6 minute narrative to serve as the backbone of “BOULDER CANYON, HOOVER DAM.”
I intended “BOULDER CANYON, HOOVER DAM” to be performed without a click track, so the track features a “metronome” comprised of water and industrial sounds to guide the performer. Much of the melodic material used in both the backing track and the vibraphone solo part are inspired by the music of Steve Reich as well as dance and pop music. In other instances, the melodic material is a melodicization of the narration from the documentary.
While Hoover Dam is geographically located in Black Canyon, the legislation that resulted in the construction of Hoover Dam was “The Boulder Canyon Project Act of 1928,” hence the name of the piece: “BOULDER CANYON, HOOVER DAM.”
“BOULDER CANYON, HOOVER DAM” is great for students interested in electro-acoustic music, multimedia performance pieces, and contemporary percussion music with a pop music influence. This solo features two-mallet playing, four-mallet playing, and playing with one hand while bowing the vibraphone with the other.
When I delivered “BOULDER CANYON, HOOVER DAM” to Danielle, I also sent her a link to the complete documentary, “The Story of Hoover Dam,” around which I created this piece. Danielle then created a condensed edit of the video component of the documentary to play in sync with the backing track during performances. “BOULDER CANYON, HOOVER DAM” may be performed with or without video projection.
– electronic playback [.wav] + video projection [.mov] are included with purchase of the score.
“ALTITUDE” is a quintet for vibraphone, violin, Bb clarinet, tenor saxophone, and piano inspired by the music of Socrates Garcia, Bob Brookmeyer, and Nashville jam-band Dynamo. The work contains two movements that may be performed in succession or independently.
“ALTITUDE” is based thematically on two dramatically different types of mountains I had visited in years prior to composing this piece: mountains at high altitudes in Colombia + mountains (fjords) at sea level in Norway.
I. Mountains (Colombia)
This movement is upbeat and festive, inspired by the grassy mountains and wonderful people in Santa Rosa de Osos and Medellin, Colombia.
II. Fjords (Scandinavia)
The second movement has a soft nature and humble joy that encapsulates the beauty of the Scandinavian landscape and people. While this movement still draws some influence from jazz, it is also inspired by the music of Peter Gabriel.
“ALTITUDE” is great for students looking for a chamber piece that covers the musical spectrum from fun + upbeat to fragile + beautiful all in a harmonic language accessible to any audience.