Beyond the Clouds (Download)Beyond the Clouds (Download)
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Beyond the Clouds (Download)

for percussion orchestra
Level: Advanced
Duration: 7:00
Personnel: 12 players
Release Date: 2017
Delivery Method: Direct Download
Product ID : TSPCE17-021DL
Price: $50.00
Item #: TSPCE17-021DL

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Description

Jim Casella's Beyond the Clouds was written after a transformational trip to Nepal where he and a group of friends trekked for weeks to the remote Himalayan base of the Annapurna massif. This piece for full percussion orchestra calls for a few rare instruments found in that region, which give the piece a unique sound. Instruments like Himalayan yak bells, singing bowl, bamboo wind chimes, Tibetan finger cymbals, and pod rattles all cohere into one exotic and expansive sound palette. With driving rhythms, nuanced space, and layered, memorable themes that make Casella's music so unique, Beyond the Clouds is a vibrant representation of the human spirit.

Beyond the Clouds was commissioned in 2017 by Joe Hobbs and the Vandegrift High School Percussion Ensemble from Austin, Texas. It is dedicated to Joe Hobbs, Mark Hunter, and Sean Womack.

Instrumentation

Crotales (2 octaves)

2 glockenspiels

Xylophone

Chimes

2 vibraphones

4 marimbas—(2) low A, (2) low E

4 timpani

Drums (bongos, conga (high), 4 concert toms, snare drum, concert bass drum, mounted kick drum)

Cymbals & gongs (sizzle cymbal*, china cymbal, splash cymbal, 2 suspended cymbals, hi-hat, ride cymbal, tam-tam, small Chinese gong)

Accessories (2 mark trees (shared), slapstick, vibraslap, Himalayan singing bowl, garden weasel, temple blocks, claves, 3 high woodblocks, small shaker, 2 sets of Tibetan finger cymbals, 2 triangles (large & medium), Himalayan yak bells, bell tree, 2 cowbells, energy chime (approx. E or B pitch), ankle bells, bamboo wind chimes, rainstick, sleigh bells, pod rattle)

*Shared between Marimba 3 & Chimes

Reviews

This piece offers an auditory experience for audiences, as Jim Casella takes them to the Himalayan Mountains in Nepal. The piece is inspired by a trip taken there during the monsoon season and reflects the adventure of hiking through the rainy mountain region.

The work calls for some unusual instruments such as Himalayan Yak bells, a pod rattle, ankle bells, and singing bowls. Casella offers insight on where to obtain these instruments or how to find reasonable substitutes. The mallet players will need to be rather adept and agile with two mallets, playing fast scalar passages up and down the instruments. Syncopations between the instruments create a consistent rhythm amongst the mallets.

The fast opening is highlighted by the melody in the vibraphone part. In the middle section the malelt instruments are to be played with "shaft slaps" and with the butt of the mallet. This helps to create a unique wooden sound that recalls the sound of rain in the mountains. As the piece builds back up we return to the opening material, that then slowy fades back down leaving only the marimba scale passages as the sounds of yak bells and bamboo wind chimes ring in the distance.

This piece would be an excellent addition to the repertoire of an advanced high school or collegiate percussion ensemble. If a big enough stage is used, spreading the ensemble out would allow for some very interesting antiphonal effects for the audience. Casella has done an excellent job of capturing the rainy hikes he describes in the program notes.

–Josh Armstrong
Percussive Notes
Vol. 56, No. 3, July 2018

Description

Jim Casella's Beyond the Clouds was written after a transformational trip to Nepal where he and a group of friends trekked for weeks to the remote Himalayan base of the Annapurna massif. This piece for full percussion orchestra calls for a few rare instruments found in that region, which give the piece a unique sound. Instruments like Himalayan yak bells, singing bowl, bamboo wind chimes, Tibetan finger cymbals, and pod rattles all cohere into one exotic and expansive sound palette. With driving rhythms, nuanced space, and layered, memorable themes that make Casella's music so unique, Beyond the Clouds is a vibrant representation of the human spirit.

Beyond the Clouds was commissioned in 2017 by Joe Hobbs and the Vandegrift High School Percussion Ensemble from Austin, Texas. It is dedicated to Joe Hobbs, Mark Hunter, and Sean Womack.

Instrumentation

Crotales (2 octaves)

2 glockenspiels

Xylophone

Chimes

2 vibraphones

4 marimbas—(2) low A, (2) low E

4 timpani

Drums (bongos, conga (high), 4 concert toms, snare drum, concert bass drum, mounted kick drum)

Cymbals & gongs (sizzle cymbal*, china cymbal, splash cymbal, 2 suspended cymbals, hi-hat, ride cymbal, tam-tam, small Chinese gong)

Accessories (2 mark trees (shared), slapstick, vibraslap, Himalayan singing bowl, garden weasel, temple blocks, claves, 3 high woodblocks, small shaker, 2 sets of Tibetan finger cymbals, 2 triangles (large & medium), Himalayan yak bells, bell tree, 2 cowbells, energy chime (approx. E or B pitch), ankle bells, bamboo wind chimes, rainstick, sleigh bells, pod rattle)

*Shared between Marimba 3 & Chimes

Reviews

This piece offers an auditory experience for audiences, as Jim Casella takes them to the Himalayan Mountains in Nepal. The piece is inspired by a trip taken there during the monsoon season and reflects the adventure of hiking through the rainy mountain region.

The work calls for some unusual instruments such as Himalayan Yak bells, a pod rattle, ankle bells, and singing bowls. Casella offers insight on where to obtain these instruments or how to find reasonable substitutes. The mallet players will need to be rather adept and agile with two mallets, playing fast scalar passages up and down the instruments. Syncopations between the instruments create a consistent rhythm amongst the mallets.

The fast opening is highlighted by the melody in the vibraphone part. In the middle section the malelt instruments are to be played with "shaft slaps" and with the butt of the mallet. This helps to create a unique wooden sound that recalls the sound of rain in the mountains. As the piece builds back up we return to the opening material, that then slowy fades back down leaving only the marimba scale passages as the sounds of yak bells and bamboo wind chimes ring in the distance.

This piece would be an excellent addition to the repertoire of an advanced high school or collegiate percussion ensemble. If a big enough stage is used, spreading the ensemble out would allow for some very interesting antiphonal effects for the audience. Casella has done an excellent job of capturing the rainy hikes he describes in the program notes.

–Josh Armstrong
Percussive Notes
Vol. 56, No. 3, July 2018


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