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Play: Levels 1, 2 and 3

Play: Levels 1, 2 and 3

complete version for orchestra

Levels 1 and 3 may be performed separately


  • Instrumentation: orchestra
  • Edition: performance material

 
Description
I am fascinated by how instruments are played, and how the physical act of playing an instrument becomes potent theatrical material when we foreground it on stage at an orchestra concert. I'm also fascinated by how the orchestra, as a meta-instrument, is played, how its many moving parts and people can play with or against or apart from one another. While the world "play" certainly connotes fun and whimsy and a child-like exuberance, it can also hint at a darker side of interpersonal relationships, at manipulation, control, deceit, and the many forms of master-to-puppet dynamics one could possibly extrapolate from the composer-conductor-orchestra-audience chain of communication. Much of this piece is concerned with who is playing whom. The percussionists, for instance, spend a lot of their time and energy "playing" the rest of the orchestra (just as they themselves are "played" by the conductor, who in turn is "played" by the score). Specific percussion instruments act as triggers, turning on and off various players, making them (sometimes in a spirit of jest, sometimes not) play louder or softer, forwards or backwards, faster or slower. They cause the music to rewind and retry things, to jump back and forth in its own narrative structure, and to change channels entirely, all with an eye and ear toward finding a way out of the labyrinth and on to some higher level.
Details
Auftragswerk : Commissioned by the Boston Modern Orchestra Project with funding from Music Alive, a national residency program of the League of American Orchestras and New Music USA. Extensive revisions were commissioned by the Los Angeles Philharmonic and premiered by that orchestra, under the direction of Gustavo Dudamel, on October 28th, 2016 at Walt Disney Concert Hall.
Content text: I Level 1 (may be performed separately)
II Level 2
III Level 3 (may be performed separately)
Performance duration: 47'0"
Publisher: Schott Music Corporation
Uraufführung : 17. Mai 2013 Boston, MA, Jordan Hall (USA) · Dirigent: Gil Rose · Boston Modern Orchestra Project
Year of composition: 2013, rev. 2016
instrumentation: 3(2.,3.pic).2.ca.3(3.ebcl).3(3.cbsn)-4.3.2.tbtn.1-4perc(I. vib [with bow], 4bng, 5tempbl, 3 splash cym, 5 tin cans, brake d, kick d, washboard [possibly shared with perc 3], tam-t, slapstick [very large]; II. crot [with bow], 5 log d, 4 opera gongs, 4 sm tom-t, spring coil, tri, guiro, tub bells [shared with perc 4]; III. xylo, 4wdbl, 5 cow bells, kick d, ratchet, washboard [possibly shared with perc 1], slapstick [very large], b.d [shared with perc 4], glsp [shared with perc 4]; IV. vib [with bow], 4 sus cym, glsp [shared with perc 3], b.d, sand paper blocks, b.d [shared with perc 3], tub bells [shared with perc 2])-pno-str(16.14.12.10.8)
Delivery rights: worldwide
Performances
Conductor: Juraj Valčuha
Orchestra: Orchestra Sinfonica Nazionale della RAI
2019-11-11 | Modena (Italy), Teatro Pavarotti
Conductor: Juraj Valčuha
Orchestra: Orchestra Sinfonica Nazionale della RAI
2019-11-09 | Modena (Italy), Teatro Pavarotti
Conductor: Juraj Valčuha
Orchestra: Orchestra Sinfonica Nazionale della RAI
2019-11-08 | Torino (Italy), Auditorium RAI Arturo Toscanini — 20:00
Conductor: Juraj Valčuha
Orchestra: Orchestra Sinfonica Nazionale della RAI
2019-11-07 | Torino (Italy), Auditorium RAI Arturo Toscanini — 20:30
Conductor: Matthew Aucoin
2019-01-27 | San Diego,CA (United States of America), Symphony Hall
Conductor: Matthew Aucoin
2019-01-25 | San Diego,CA (United States of America), Symphony Hall
Conductor: Cristian Macelaru
Orchestra: Detroit Symphony Orchestra
2018-11-10 | Detroit,MI (United States of America), Orchestra Hall
Conductor: Cristian Macelaru
Orchestra: Detroit Symphony Orchestra
2018-11-09 | Detroit,MI (United States of America), Orchestra Hall
Conductor: Cristian Macelaru
Orchestra: Detroit Symphony Orchestra
2018-11-08 | Detroit,MI (United States of America), Orchestra Hall
Conductor: David Robertson
Orchestra: Aspen Festival Orchestra
2018-07-08 | Aspen, CO (United States of America), Benedict Music tent
Conductor: Teddy Abrams
Orchestra: Louisville Orchestra
2018-04-07 | Louisville, KY (United States of America), Kentucky Center
Conductor: André de Ridder
Orchestra: YLE Radion sinfoniaorkesteri (Finnish Radio Symphony Orchestra)
2017-02-01 | Helsinki (Finland), Music Centre Concert Hall — 19:00
Conductor: Matthias Pintscher
Orchestra: Cincinnati Symphony Orchestra
2017-01-13 | Cincinnati, OH (United States of America), Taft Theatre
Conductor: Gustavo Dudamel
Orchestra: Los Angeles Philharmonic
2016-10-31 | San Francisco, CA (United States of America), Davies Hall
Conductor: Gustavo Dudamel
Orchestra: Los Angeles Philharmonic
2016-10-29 | Costa Mesa, CA (United States of America), Segerstrom Concert Hall
Conductor: Gustavo Dudamel
Orchestra: Los Angeles Philharmonic
2016-10-28 | Los Angeles, CA (United States of America), Walt Disney Concert Hall
Conductor: Alex Pauk
Orchestra: Esprit Orchestra
2015-11-15 | Toronto, ON (Canada), Koerner Hall, Royal Conservatory of Music | national Premiere
Conductor: Marin Alsop
2014-08-01 | Santa Cruz, CA (United States of America), Cabrillo Festival of Contemporary Music
Conductor: Gil Rose
Orchestra: Boston Modern Orchestra Project
2013-05-17 | Boston, MA (United States of America), Jordan Hall | World Premiere
Awards

Grawemeyer Award

I am fascinated by how instruments are played, and how the physical act of playing an instrument becomes potent theatrical material when we foreground it on stage at an orchestra concert. I'm also fascinated by how the orchestra, as a meta-instrument, is played, how its many moving parts and people can play with or against or apart from one another. While the world "play" certainly connotes fun and whimsy and a child-like exuberance, it can also hint at a darker side of interpersonal relationships, at manipulation, control, deceit, and the many forms of master-to-puppet dynamics one could possibly extrapolate from the composer-conductor-orchestra-audience chain of communication. Much of this piece is concerned with who is playing whom. The percussionists, for instance, spend a lot of their time and energy "playing" the rest of the orchestra (just as they themselves are "played" by the conductor, who in turn is "played" by the score). Specific percussion instruments act as triggers, turning on and off various players, making them (sometimes in a spirit of jest, sometimes not) play louder or softer, forwards or backwards, faster or slower. They cause the music to rewind and retry things, to jump back and forth in its own narrative structure, and to change channels entirely, all with an eye and ear toward finding a way out of the labyrinth and on to some higher level.
Auftragswerk : Commissioned by the Boston Modern Orchestra Project with funding from Music Alive, a national residency program of the League of American Orchestras and New Music USA. Extensive revisions were commissioned by the Los Angeles Philharmonic and premiered by that orchestra, under the direction of Gustavo Dudamel, on October 28th, 2016 at Walt Disney Concert Hall.
Content text: I Level 1 (may be performed separately)
II Level 2
III Level 3 (may be performed separately)
Performance duration: 47'0"
Publisher: Schott Music Corporation
Uraufführung : 17. Mai 2013 Boston, MA, Jordan Hall (USA) · Dirigent: Gil Rose · Boston Modern Orchestra Project
Year of composition: 2013, rev. 2016
instrumentation: 3(2.,3.pic).2.ca.3(3.ebcl).3(3.cbsn)-4.3.2.tbtn.1-4perc(I. vib [with bow], 4bng, 5tempbl, 3 splash cym, 5 tin cans, brake d, kick d, washboard [possibly shared with perc 3], tam-t, slapstick [very large]; II. crot [with bow], 5 log d, 4 opera gongs, 4 sm tom-t, spring coil, tri, guiro, tub bells [shared with perc 4]; III. xylo, 4wdbl, 5 cow bells, kick d, ratchet, washboard [possibly shared with perc 1], slapstick [very large], b.d [shared with perc 4], glsp [shared with perc 4]; IV. vib [with bow], 4 sus cym, glsp [shared with perc 3], b.d, sand paper blocks, b.d [shared with perc 3], tub bells [shared with perc 2])-pno-str(16.14.12.10.8)
Delivery rights: worldwide
Conductor: Juraj Valčuha
Orchestra: Orchestra Sinfonica Nazionale della RAI
2019-11-11 | Modena (Italy), Teatro Pavarotti
Conductor: Juraj Valčuha
Orchestra: Orchestra Sinfonica Nazionale della RAI
2019-11-09 | Modena (Italy), Teatro Pavarotti
Conductor: Juraj Valčuha
Orchestra: Orchestra Sinfonica Nazionale della RAI
2019-11-08 | Torino (Italy), Auditorium RAI Arturo Toscanini — 20:00
Conductor: Juraj Valčuha
Orchestra: Orchestra Sinfonica Nazionale della RAI
2019-11-07 | Torino (Italy), Auditorium RAI Arturo Toscanini — 20:30
Conductor: Matthew Aucoin
2019-01-27 | San Diego,CA (United States of America), Symphony Hall
Conductor: Matthew Aucoin
2019-01-25 | San Diego,CA (United States of America), Symphony Hall
Conductor: Cristian Macelaru
Orchestra: Detroit Symphony Orchestra
2018-11-10 | Detroit,MI (United States of America), Orchestra Hall
Conductor: Cristian Macelaru
Orchestra: Detroit Symphony Orchestra
2018-11-09 | Detroit,MI (United States of America), Orchestra Hall
Conductor: Cristian Macelaru
Orchestra: Detroit Symphony Orchestra
2018-11-08 | Detroit,MI (United States of America), Orchestra Hall
Conductor: David Robertson
Orchestra: Aspen Festival Orchestra
2018-07-08 | Aspen, CO (United States of America), Benedict Music tent
Conductor: Teddy Abrams
Orchestra: Louisville Orchestra
2018-04-07 | Louisville, KY (United States of America), Kentucky Center
Conductor: André de Ridder
Orchestra: YLE Radion sinfoniaorkesteri (Finnish Radio Symphony Orchestra)
2017-02-01 | Helsinki (Finland), Music Centre Concert Hall — 19:00
Conductor: Matthias Pintscher
Orchestra: Cincinnati Symphony Orchestra
2017-01-13 | Cincinnati, OH (United States of America), Taft Theatre
Conductor: Gustavo Dudamel
Orchestra: Los Angeles Philharmonic
2016-10-31 | San Francisco, CA (United States of America), Davies Hall
Conductor: Gustavo Dudamel
Orchestra: Los Angeles Philharmonic
2016-10-29 | Costa Mesa, CA (United States of America), Segerstrom Concert Hall
Conductor: Gustavo Dudamel
Orchestra: Los Angeles Philharmonic
2016-10-28 | Los Angeles, CA (United States of America), Walt Disney Concert Hall
Conductor: Alex Pauk
Orchestra: Esprit Orchestra
2015-11-15 | Toronto, ON (Canada), Koerner Hall, Royal Conservatory of Music | national Premiere
Conductor: Marin Alsop
2014-08-01 | Santa Cruz, CA (United States of America), Cabrillo Festival of Contemporary Music
Conductor: Gil Rose
Orchestra: Boston Modern Orchestra Project
2013-05-17 | Boston, MA (United States of America), Jordan Hall | World Premiere

Grawemeyer Award