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Numerology (Download)

for percussion ensemble with solo marimba
Level: Med-Easy
Duration: 4:00
Personnel: 4-7 players
Release Date: 2020
Product ID : TSPCE20-010DL
Price: $34.00
Item #: TSPCE20-010DL

Formats Available:


Description

Numerology began as a sketch that Brian Nozny used in a composition class to display certain techniques. He later developed it into a full piece for percussion ensemble at the medium-easy skill level.  It is playable as a quartet (solo marimba + percussion trio) or as a septet by adding the other mallet parts.

The title of the piece refers to the use of numbers from the initial thematic material that was used as the source for the rest of the composition. Helping fill the gap between easy and advanced percussion ensemble literature, Numerology is a great vehicle for an advanced middle school or intermediate high school ensemble.


This piece is dedicated to the students of the 2018 the Birch Creek Music Performance Center composition track in Egg Harbor, Wisconsin, for whom it was initially created.



Use of this product is governed by the license terms outlined here.

Instrumentation

Glockenspiel

Xylophone

Vibraphone

Marimba (4-octave)

Drums (concert toms (2), concert bass drum)

Cymbals & gongs (hi-hat, ride cymbal, suspended cymbal, tam-tam)

Accessories (triangle)

Can be performed as a septet w/all parts, or as a quartet by only using the solo marimba part plus the 3 perc parts.

Reviews

“Numerology” is a piece for the intermediate percussion ensemble that features the marimba throughout, yet does not require advanced techniques or superhuman abilities. Much like Brian Nozny’s composition “Sharps,” this piece takes a relatively simple rhythmic idea and expands and develops themes around that to create a more complex array of rhythmic interplay; even so, “Numerology” maintains simple individual responsibilities overlayed to create interesting, intricate textures, providing an excellent piece for middle and high school students. 

Given the title, one might assume that numbers drive the main themes and development of the piece; however, Nozny never makes the work feel calculated. The main rhythmic motives include patterns of three and five notes. These integers are found throughout the piece in deliberate or more elongated and subtle ways—possibly including the key signatures of three and then five flats. All parts, including the solo marimba, only require two mallets. Although most rhythms are relatively simple, some of the syncopated sixteenth-note passages could challenge beginning players. The solo part is present throughout the work with small exceptions, propelling melodic ideas and representing new rhythmic motives that are created by the percussion parts. The additional keyboard parts share in the responsibilities of adding color to melodic ideas as well as creating underlying harmonic motion. The percussion parts require a multi-percussion approach and mature touch to create the various timbres required for Nozny’s work. 

The piece can be performed with either four or seven players. In the four-player version, there is a solo marimba player and no other keyboard instruments. The full ensemble rendition provides a lot more than just harmonic or melodic accompaniment. Along with adding more metallic colors to support the marimba soloist, the additional three players provide more iterations of the developing rhythmic cells, helping drive the piece and create more textures throughout. With a relatively consistent difficulty level for each part, this four-minute percussion ensemble work is perfect for the advanced middle school or high school ensemble. 

—Matthew Geiger
Percussive Notes
Vol. 58, No. 6, December 2020

Description

Numerology began as a sketch that Brian Nozny used in a composition class to display certain techniques. He later developed it into a full piece for percussion ensemble at the medium-easy skill level.  It is playable as a quartet (solo marimba + percussion trio) or as a septet by adding the other mallet parts.

The title of the piece refers to the use of numbers from the initial thematic material that was used as the source for the rest of the composition. Helping fill the gap between easy and advanced percussion ensemble literature, Numerology is a great vehicle for an advanced middle school or intermediate high school ensemble.


This piece is dedicated to the students of the 2018 the Birch Creek Music Performance Center composition track in Egg Harbor, Wisconsin, for whom it was initially created.



Use of this product is governed by the license terms outlined here.

Instrumentation

Glockenspiel

Xylophone

Vibraphone

Marimba (4-octave)

Drums (concert toms (2), concert bass drum)

Cymbals & gongs (hi-hat, ride cymbal, suspended cymbal, tam-tam)

Accessories (triangle)

Can be performed as a septet w/all parts, or as a quartet by only using the solo marimba part plus the 3 perc parts.

Reviews

“Numerology” is a piece for the intermediate percussion ensemble that features the marimba throughout, yet does not require advanced techniques or superhuman abilities. Much like Brian Nozny’s composition “Sharps,” this piece takes a relatively simple rhythmic idea and expands and develops themes around that to create a more complex array of rhythmic interplay; even so, “Numerology” maintains simple individual responsibilities overlayed to create interesting, intricate textures, providing an excellent piece for middle and high school students. 

Given the title, one might assume that numbers drive the main themes and development of the piece; however, Nozny never makes the work feel calculated. The main rhythmic motives include patterns of three and five notes. These integers are found throughout the piece in deliberate or more elongated and subtle ways—possibly including the key signatures of three and then five flats. All parts, including the solo marimba, only require two mallets. Although most rhythms are relatively simple, some of the syncopated sixteenth-note passages could challenge beginning players. The solo part is present throughout the work with small exceptions, propelling melodic ideas and representing new rhythmic motives that are created by the percussion parts. The additional keyboard parts share in the responsibilities of adding color to melodic ideas as well as creating underlying harmonic motion. The percussion parts require a multi-percussion approach and mature touch to create the various timbres required for Nozny’s work. 

The piece can be performed with either four or seven players. In the four-player version, there is a solo marimba player and no other keyboard instruments. The full ensemble rendition provides a lot more than just harmonic or melodic accompaniment. Along with adding more metallic colors to support the marimba soloist, the additional three players provide more iterations of the developing rhythmic cells, helping drive the piece and create more textures throughout. With a relatively consistent difficulty level for each part, this four-minute percussion ensemble work is perfect for the advanced middle school or high school ensemble. 

—Matthew Geiger
Percussive Notes
Vol. 58, No. 6, December 2020


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