“Collage for Machines” (2017), for Pierrot Ensemble

“Collage for Machines” Score

On the one hand this piece is a collage of pleasing and discontinuous textures strictly for fun, on the other it is a systematic catalogue of all the possible six-part chord combinations of the first six pitches of the circle of fifths presented in strict order. With this piece I hoped to combine appealing simplicity with theoretical rigor.

There are six sections in total, each with its own texture. None of the textures develop themselves, nor do the six sections interact in any other way than that one follows another. The consonant pitch material is all that holds them together at the level of content. At the level of form however there is a clear logical structure that develops over the course of the piece. In the first section all vertical harmonies are unisons, in the second section they are all seconds etc. This puts discontinuous content at odds with a continuous form, creating (I hope) a kind of non-psychological tension that belies the soothing surface of the sounds in an engaging way.

Jairan Hasan, flute
Luke Ellard, clarinet
Tyler Cunningham, percussion
Huizi Zhang, piano
Ludek Wojtkowski, violin
Diana Chiknaikin, cello

Premiere: July 8th, 2017- New Music Concert at Atlantic Music Festival: Colby College, Waterville, ME