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The Oregon Variations (by David Johnson)

Price: $69.00

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"This is a composition for solo marimba (5.0 octave) accompanied by two mallet-keyboard parts and two percussion parts. The two mallet-keyboard parts can be performed on a single 4.6-octave marimba. The first percussion part is scored for various toms, cymbals and triangles, while the second part requires an Irish bodhran. Johnson states that the bodhran should be played 'with a traditional tipper and plenty of improvised pitch bending.'
After the introductory solo, the composition progresses through two sections that employ percussion colors (bowed cymbal, triangle strikes with bowed crotales, etc.) that accentuate the accents from the soloist. The subsequent section is faster and introduces the bodhran. Here the bodhran player is asked to keep brisk, gallop rhythms while encountering a steady flow of meter changes. The other performers will find it difficult to execute their parts in these faster sections due to the ever-changing bodhran rhythms, as well as the syncopations encountered in the marimba and percussion parts.
The piece continues with alternating 'rubato' and 'molto ritmico' sections until the piece concludes. Besides a brief percussion solo section, the piece functions on the premise of percussion colors that accentuate the solo part.
This piece will be rewarding for the intermediate to advanced percussion ensemble. It is very organic in sound and has wonderful amalgamations of percussion colors."

-- Eric Willie, Percussive Notes, March 2010

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