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Sequoia (Download)

for marimba duo
Level: Advanced
Duration: 7:20
Release Date: 2016
Delivery Method: Direct Download
Product ID : TSPCD16-001DL
Price: $24.00
Item #: TSPCD16-001DL

Formats Available:



Description

As Aristotle once said, “The whole is greater than the sum of its parts.” Such is the case with Sequoia, a masterfully-crafted marimba duet by Alex Stopa. Musically, the piece explores ambiguities both harmonically (major versus minor, dissonance versus consonance) and rhythmically (through polyrhythm and metric modulation).

Composer Alex Stopa states, “Some time ago, I took a road trip and visited the breathtaking redwood forests of Northern California. Standing among these majestic trees, some of which are over two and a half thousand years old, was like stepping back in time. It was a deeply spiritual and moving experience. The strength and nobility of these grand, old ambassadors formed the inspiration for this work.”

The grandeur of his composition will not be lost on the audience either. Sequoia will give the duo a means by which they can immerse and transform listeners. A surefire hit for percussion duos!

Instrumentation

  • 2 marimbas—(1) low F, (1) low C

Shared Recordings

Reviews

Much like composer Alex Stopa, I also remember the first time I saw the redwood forests in Northern California and was amazed by the awe-inspiring trees. “Sequoia” for two marimbas is an excellent portrayal of the emotions inherent when standing among the ancient giants. Also, his performance on the Tapspace website is phenomenal, giving a fantastic perspective to the piece. 

Stopa’s frequent use of recurring themes provides a connective tissue throughout the work as it weaves in and out of various tempi and time signatures. His use of polyrhythms is apparent from the very beginning, as accents are used to bring out a composite rhythm implemented throughout as a rhythmic motive. Specifically, the use of polyrhythms in the middle section is beautifully used to provide motion and contrast to the more aggressive beginning and end sections. Similarly, a melodic threenote descending line appears in various shapes throughout the work. This fragment is passed between both players and provides a consistent motive for Stopa’s melodic development. 

“Sequoia” lasts a little over seven minutes and is a great piece for a graduate or professional recital. Both parts require significant virtuosity at times, although the top voice frequently carries a more melodic role and the bottom acts as contrapuntal or harmonic support. The frequently shifting meter and harmony provide many unexpected turns, making the piece even more exciting. I highly encourage duos to check this piece out. Audiences and performers will love it. 

—Matthew Geiger
Percussive Notes
Vol. 55, No. 2, May 2017

Description

As Aristotle once said, “The whole is greater than the sum of its parts.” Such is the case with Sequoia, a masterfully-crafted marimba duet by Alex Stopa. Musically, the piece explores ambiguities both harmonically (major versus minor, dissonance versus consonance) and rhythmically (through polyrhythm and metric modulation).

Composer Alex Stopa states, “Some time ago, I took a road trip and visited the breathtaking redwood forests of Northern California. Standing among these majestic trees, some of which are over two and a half thousand years old, was like stepping back in time. It was a deeply spiritual and moving experience. The strength and nobility of these grand, old ambassadors formed the inspiration for this work.”

The grandeur of his composition will not be lost on the audience either. Sequoia will give the duo a means by which they can immerse and transform listeners. A surefire hit for percussion duos!

Instrumentation

  • 2 marimbas—(1) low F, (1) low C

Shared Recordings

Reviews

Much like composer Alex Stopa, I also remember the first time I saw the redwood forests in Northern California and was amazed by the awe-inspiring trees. “Sequoia” for two marimbas is an excellent portrayal of the emotions inherent when standing among the ancient giants. Also, his performance on the Tapspace website is phenomenal, giving a fantastic perspective to the piece. 

Stopa’s frequent use of recurring themes provides a connective tissue throughout the work as it weaves in and out of various tempi and time signatures. His use of polyrhythms is apparent from the very beginning, as accents are used to bring out a composite rhythm implemented throughout as a rhythmic motive. Specifically, the use of polyrhythms in the middle section is beautifully used to provide motion and contrast to the more aggressive beginning and end sections. Similarly, a melodic threenote descending line appears in various shapes throughout the work. This fragment is passed between both players and provides a consistent motive for Stopa’s melodic development. 

“Sequoia” lasts a little over seven minutes and is a great piece for a graduate or professional recital. Both parts require significant virtuosity at times, although the top voice frequently carries a more melodic role and the bottom acts as contrapuntal or harmonic support. The frequently shifting meter and harmony provide many unexpected turns, making the piece even more exciting. I highly encourage duos to check this piece out. Audiences and performers will love it. 

—Matthew Geiger
Percussive Notes
Vol. 55, No. 2, May 2017



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