Windhammer (2017)

Duration: ca. 11′
Instrumentation: clarinet and two toy pianos
Score

Windhammer was written for the inaugural season of Figmentum, a new music ensemble I founded with Daria Binkowski and Ania Sundstrom. In part because of the uniqueness, and in part because of the difficulty of finding venues with pianos, we decided to focus our performance around new music for toy pianos. For my piece for our group, I wanted to include clarinet to provide a traditional instrument that has control over its sustain to anchor the two little pianos and enhance their resonance. The piece opens with a controlled improvisation around the materials that would form the rest of the piece, following by a slow and ritualistic section of bell-like chords and lyrical melody that builds in energy before bursting into insistent chords and noisy multiphonics. The middle section consists of an off-kilter waltz in the toy pianos, later joined by the clarinet. The final section returns to the opening material, but with the pitched material of the pianos largely removed, creating a sparse texture that shows the effects of the violent energy of the middle sections.

PERFORMANCE HISTORY

May 12, 2018 – San Diego, CA
Figmentum

April 15, 2018 – Joshua Tree National Park, CA
Figmentum
High Desert Soundings Festival

March 17, 2018 – Las Vegas, NV
Figmentum
CMS Regional Conference

January 13, 2018 – La Jolla, CA
Figmentum

January 7, 2018 – St. Petersburg, FL
Figmentum
Florida International Toy Piano Festival

January 5, 2018 – St Petersburg, FL
Figmentum
Florida International Toy Piano Festival

December 15, 2017 – San Diego, CA (world premiere)
Figmentum