About this work:
One of my purposes in composing Three Movements for trombone quartet was to treat this unusual combination as one would a string quartet or any other ensemble for which the most serious music is written. As a result, this piece makes both musical and tecdhnical demands on the performers beyond those normally expected of an orchestral or band player. While the notes themsaelves are not expecially difficult to play, the need to hear acutely as a member oa a highly integrated ensemble and to realize thew wide dynaqmic range and variety of articulation which this piece requires can make these notes seem more than usually difficult to execute. The music itself is by turns dramatic, light in texture, introspective, mercurial, athletic, docile, employing a harmonic language that is quite chromatic and combinations of intervals that are often stark and seemingly intractible.
Because of the demands made on performer and listener alike, the three movements are short, making their points quickly and without evasion. All are in a three-part form in which a middle section introduces a contrasting theme based on characteristic intervals employed throughout the piece. The middle section of the first movement may also be thought of as a development section. When the subject matter of each first section is restated, it is always presented in considerably varied but recognizeable form. Although brief in duration, each movement can be conceived as a kind of micro-organism which, despite its size, suggests dimensions greater than those which appear to the naked ear.
Version: trombone quartet
Year composed: 1982
Ensemble type: Chamber or Jazz Ensemble, Without Voice:Other Combinations, 2-5 players
Instrumentation: 3 Trombone, 1 Bass Trombone