Wednesday, July 22, 2009

String Quartet: Deadlines and Samples

Another composition, my first of four dissertation projects, the semester, the summer, our three years in a "cheap" Brookland apartment, my four years in DC (until February). The end of all these is less than 25 days away, which brings a curious blend of anxiety and relief.

String Quartet No. 1: At Best It Sometimes Rhymes

5 bonus points for anyone who can ID where the title comes from, without the help of Google.)

Movements 2, 3, and 4 are now complete (or, complete enough), with a combined performance time of around 8'30". I've prepared a preview of these movements, along with an early draft of Movement 1, for your viewing and listening pleasure.

Here they are. (Leave comments at the bottom of this post.)

Pending successful Development, Recap and Coda sections, my quasi-minimalist first movement (6'43") will be completed by next Monday, along with individual parts for each movement (15'15" total running time).

An elusive Movement 5, which for some reason waited until last week to appear in my head, would make a nice bookend with Movement 1. It explores repeating cycles of varying lengths, from the 2-3 beat minimalist cell, up through the period, all derived from the same material. So it's kind of like a minute-long chunk of music that's accompanied by short, repeating snippets of that same material.

At least, that's what it will be like once I've written it. Movement 5 might be completed before the summer is out, but perhaps not in time for my official dissertation submission. Once everything is truly complete, I'll re-post MP3s and PDFs of each movement.

(100 bonus points for anyone who read this far.)

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