SEVEN FOR SIX

for flute, clarinet, percussion, piano, violin, and cello

duration ~ 21 minutes

Commissioned by Standing Wave Ensemble

Premiered on May 17, 2015 at Pyatt Hall, Vancouver BC

*Form is the mechanism by which composers regulate familiarity. (David Lang)

 

What if the form of a musical work could change? How would a listnener experience a piece of music that was transformed each time it was performed? Could re-arranging musical form generate more creative ways of listening and offer new familiarities with music?

 

Written for a concert exploring the concept of chaos, Seven For Six has 720 different ways of ordering its 7-segment structure so that each time it is performed there is a new unfolding of musical events. Through overlapping sections of music, the musicians connect each of the 7 segments and create unique transitions particular to the specific ordering of segments chosen before performance.

 

In composing this work, my goal was to find a balance between writing down specific musical instructions (through music notation) while also embracing improvisation and in-the-moment reactions that are essential to a meaningful and aesthetic listening experience. As composition is a form of communication articulated through the control and organization of different sonic materials, in the case of Seven For Six the performers complete the composition process by turning the unpredictable and ambigiously notated transitions into an intelligible and continuous piece of music.

 

*From “A Compendium of Ideas About Form in Music” by Jocelyn Morlock | The Composer Essay Project, Music on Main