four trombones (alto, 2 tenor, bass)
turbine — refleks — vapor — rostra — golem
to Andrew Glendening
May - October 1988
The work incorporates significant theatrical elements, and includes detailed staging instructions for the performers.
1990 ASCAP Grants to Young Composers Award recipient.
Julie Gray, Nick Laufer, Justin Condron, Jeremiah Stones; Joseph Klein, conductor:
• 23 April 2012; University of North Texas (Denton, TX)
Kawana'ao; J. Mark Scearce, conductor:
• 18 November 1996; University of Hawaii (Honolulu, HI)
UCLA student trombone ensemble; Kerry Farrell, director:
• 29 May 1994; University of California, Los Angeles
MSU Trombone Quartet; Andrew Glendening, director:
• 15 March 1994; Morehead State University (Morehead, KY)
IU Trombone Quartet; Joseph Klein, conductor:
• 5 July 1990; Indiana University (Bloomington, IN) — "Music of Our Time" Conference
• 19 November 1989; Oberlin College Conservatory (Oberlin, OH)
• 11 November 1989; University of Michigan (Ann Arbor, MI) — Midwest Composers Symposium
• 23 October 1989; Indiana University (Bloomington, IN)
• 19 April 1989; Indiana University (Bloomington, IN)
• 11 April 1989; Indiana University (Bloomington, IN)
• 1 April 1989; Indiana University (Bloomington, IN) [premiere]
Parallaxes for four trombones (alto, two tenors, and bass) was composed between May and October of 1988 at the request of trombonist Andrew Glendening, to whom the work is dedicated. The five movements are played without pause, forming an arch-like continuum. The first movement, turbine, is an incessant, motoric music that utilizes the directional nature of the trombone by the rotation of the performers at center stage. The rhythmic drive of turbine eventually breaks down, leading into refleks, a more restrained continuation of the chorale-like closing section of the previous movement. A two-dimensional palindrome (mirroring being effected on both vertical and horizontal axes), refleks is characterized by a static surface which obscures the gradual tonal and registral unfolding. A subversion in the tonal stability and resultant textural flaccidity leads into the more ethereal and sparsely textured vapor, at which point the performers are at the far reaches of the performance space. The introduction of disruptive gestures sets the stage for rostra, a musical argument between the four players. As the exchange becomes more heated, the ostinato pattern that characterizes golem is introduced, gradually accelerating into a series of maniacal outbursts that eventually overtake the texture and thus conclude the piece.
Parallaxes was first performed at Indiana University on 1 April 1989, and received an ASCAP Morton Gould Award in 1990.