Flying and Floating
Flying and Floating
You will get: Goods which will arrive via email as an attachment within 24 hours. The attachment will comprise a folder of PDF files (*score only). See below for full instrumentation. *The entire ensemble reads from a large-format score for this work.
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Duration: Approx. 9' Instrumentation: flute, bass clarinet, viola, cello, harp, piano (and/or guitar), bass, drums
This work has been performed by: Steve Newcomb Orchestra; Stephen Emmerson and Queensland Conservatorium of Music faculty ensemble; Luke Carbon at the Australian National University. Difficulty level: Intermediate The above recording is a version for bass clarinet, 2 violins, viola, cello, piano, bass, drums
Program notes: Flying and Floating was written for a chamber ensemble I formed while in my first year of DMA study at the Manhattan School of Music in 2011. I've always had the bass clarinet tones of John Surman in the back of my mind too, and this composition proved to be the chance to utilise it, alongside an ensemble of many strings (double bass, piano, harp and string quartet). The title refers to an image in my mind of flying over an icy landscape (non-specific) and looking down to see floating icebergs of different sizes. The metaphor of both flying and floating are seen as emotional states, with the former having direction and the latter lacking it. I must add here that the flying idea was firstly inspired by the landmark Keith Jarrett Trio album Changes, which included two tracks named Flying (part 1 and part 2) that were freely improvised by the trio in the studio. I have always loved the way they achieved forward motion without each playing together, in a harmonic, or rhythmic sense. Instead, they seem to each create waves of sound that cross one another as they explore the texture of their spontaneous creation. The atmosphere of my Flying and Floating is somewhat lamenting, and even though the work doesn't aim to be an environmental conscious statement, it is difficult in this age to not think about global warming and its impact on the ice landforms on the planet. The bass clarinet acts as main soloist and leader of the tempi of the piece. The rhythm section is free to react and play in a more textural/sonic role, as an underlying current to the specific notation for the strings. - Steve Newcomb (2012)