Dizzying Array
for orchestra
Year: 2003
Duration: 7'
First Performance: (first reading) Aspen Music Festival; Aspen, CO
  American Academy of Conducting Orchestra  
3(III=picc).3.3(III=bcl).3(III=cbn) - - timp - perc (3): xyl/glock/SD;
mar/sm.tgl/SD/BD; vib/tam-t/med and sm susp.cym - harp - pno - strings

MP3 not available

Score only available in hard copy

Program Notes

Dizzying Array was completed in the autumn of 2002. Although the work was composed on the guitar, I concurrently set about making a version of it for orchestra. In this sense, the orchestral score represents far more than an arrangement or “orchestration” of the guitar version, but rather a realization of the same work in a different context.

Although I have played the guitar for many years, I stopped writing music for the instrument from 1993 until 2001. In hindsight, it is clear to me that the reason for this is that as a composer, I felt the need in those times to put my past aside for a while in order to explore new ideas about my own creative process and my musical language. Incidentally, my attempts at writing for the guitar in these years proved to be disappointing – the pieces would either sound too typically “guitaristic,” or they sounded contrived and not nearly guitaristic enough. It was only in a desperate period of creative doldrums in early 2001 that I picked up the guitar and started to write for it again freely and without inhibition.

Since resuming composition on the guitar in 2001, I have become aware of a facet of my musical personality that I have ignored for some time. The guitar represents a very intuitive and physical side of my music making, while my ensemble works, which I hope are no less visceral, grow out of ideas and expressions of sound that I hear internally. It is my hope that by somehow combining these two different creative approaches, I will ultimately come to a deeper and more personal musical language as a composer.

The orchestral realization of Dizzying Array represents one of my first attempts at uniting these two methods. For more information on the guitar version of the piece, visit the Scordatura Suite.




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