it must be now
it must be now
When I first began writing a piece for the 2017 Sandbox Summer Seminar, I had no direction, theme, or general plan. I had written plenty for percussion before, so I first made a list of some new textures and ideas I wanted to work with, and then I found the above poem.The poem, by Arthur Conan Doyle, uses text to mimic the transition of spoken word into an echo. It plays on complete statements being made while only incomplete statements are returned.This spoke to me and I began to think how I could try to use this musically.
Elongation of Phrases: A key componant to the structure of this piece is the idea of creating longer phrases out of shorter ones.When you are dealing with an echo, the original phrase is reiturated with each extra reituration adding to the original phrase. Musically, I tried to mimic this idea by taking a repeating phrase and slowly adding a little extra to the end of it to make a new phrase. Often, the new phrase would create transitional material into the next section.
Displacement of Rhythm: When you have an echo, you are hearing the original phrase bounce back at you slightly after the original phrase is created. Musically I tried to do this by the displacement of musical figures from one player to the next. Often, due to the mirrored setup of the piece, I played on the visual aspect by create a delay from one side of the setup to the other.
Oversaturation of the Echo: An echo naturally occurs slightly after the first presenation of the phrase.When you are dealing with a longer phrase, the echo will begin before the original phrase is finished, blurring the distinction between the two. When you are dealing with a single voice, and it's echo, it creates a new texture when they overlap. When you begin to add more voices into the mix, the texture begins to get so thick that the distinction of the original phrase is nearly impossible.
Rhythmic Groupings: The basis for the rhythmic groupins in "it must be now," comes from the title by using the numbers of letters in each word. (2 + 4 + 2 + 3) At the very beginning of the piece the seperate groupings are made very clear through the dampening of pipes between harmonic shifts. As the piece continues the groupings become a little less present while an overlying larger grouping of 11, the sum total of the original groupings, remains in place.