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Three Scenes from the Desert (Download)

suite for percussion (new ensemble version!)
Level: Med-Easy
Duration: 8:20 (full suite)
Personnel: 2-5 Players
Release Date: 2018
Product ID : TSPCE18-002DL
Price: $32.00
Item #: TSPCE18-002DL

Formats Available:


Description

In this updated version for two to five players, Alex Stopa has adapted his original version of Three Scenes from the Desert, making it more inclusive and expansive. This new ensemble version features optional extra mallet parts, and auxiliary percussion parts (playable by one or two players) adding subtle nuance and texture to the primary duet.

Using such small instrumentation, the three pieces retain a cohesive quality, though they each present their own distinct musical characteristics. Furthermore, they may be performed individually, or two or more works can be performed as a suite.

Adding to their versatility, these pieces are attainable by less experienced performers while also providing great material for interludes on collegiate concerts.

These pieces are:

Desert Sunrise (2–5 players)
duet on shared vibraphone (with optional marimba and percussion)

Waltz for a Rainy Day (2–4 players)
duet for marimba & vibraphone (with optional upper marimba and glockenspiel parts)

Red Rock Canyon (2–5 players)
duet on shared marimba (with optional vibraphone and percussion)



The previous duet version of Three Scenes from the Desert (TSPCD16-003) has been discontinued and is replaced by this newer, updated version.

Instrumentation

Vibraphone

Marimba (4.3-octave, low A)

Glockenspiel*

Djembe*

Suspended cymbal*

Mark tree*

Shaker*

 

*Optional

Reviews

Inspired by the deserts of Southern nevada and California, “Three Scenes from the Desert” is an ensemble version of Alex Stopa’s duet of the same name. Like its predecessor, this small suite is centered around a mallet duet that is now accompanied by additional keyboard and percussion parts. In addition to is flexible instrumentation, the work can be presented as a suite or as individual movements.

As a suite, the work is separated into three movements: “Desert Sunrise,” “Waltz for a Rainy Day,” and “Red Rock Canyon.” Each movement has a unique effect that creates a nice complement to the suite. While the order is not predetermined, “Red Rock Canyon” is high energy and features the most definitive ending, while “Waltz for a Rainy Day” ends somewhat abruptly. Therefore, if the work is played as a suite, it would work best in score order. The most compelling movement is certainly “Desert Sunrise,” as it features several transitions in thematic material, all with a moderate tempo groove in the djembe and a thick rhythmic counterpoint between the ensemble parts. It should be noted that the optional marimba part is written for four mallets and calls for single alternating, double vertical, adn double lateral strokes, while the remaining parts are written for two mallets and are easily accessible for the intermediate player.

“Waltz for a Rainy Day” is slow and methodical, as the title suggests, but doesn’t feature a particularly memorable melody, allowing for a Zen-like respite  before the energized “Red Rock Canyon.” In “Red Rock Canyon,” the main motive is a four-over-three polyrhythm that is used thematically through the ensemble and is fully notated to be easy to read. While the rhythmic interaction is heightened, the movement doesn’t feature a clear melody, allowing the piece to settle into a trance-like groove.

This work is straightforward in conception, and with flexible instrumentation it could be interesting for the high school or college percussion ensemble. The groove-oriented stasis within each movement makes the work accessible for the audience and if needed would be functional as transition music during a lengthy set change. The score and parts are well engraved, and the accompanying CD includes a pdf version of all the parts as well as a quality audio recording for reference.

—Quintin Mallette
Percussive Notes
Vol. 56, No. 5, November 2018

Description

In this updated version for two to five players, Alex Stopa has adapted his original version of Three Scenes from the Desert, making it more inclusive and expansive. This new ensemble version features optional extra mallet parts, and auxiliary percussion parts (playable by one or two players) adding subtle nuance and texture to the primary duet.

Using such small instrumentation, the three pieces retain a cohesive quality, though they each present their own distinct musical characteristics. Furthermore, they may be performed individually, or two or more works can be performed as a suite.

Adding to their versatility, these pieces are attainable by less experienced performers while also providing great material for interludes on collegiate concerts.

These pieces are:

Desert Sunrise (2–5 players)
duet on shared vibraphone (with optional marimba and percussion)

Waltz for a Rainy Day (2–4 players)
duet for marimba & vibraphone (with optional upper marimba and glockenspiel parts)

Red Rock Canyon (2–5 players)
duet on shared marimba (with optional vibraphone and percussion)



The previous duet version of Three Scenes from the Desert (TSPCD16-003) has been discontinued and is replaced by this newer, updated version.

Instrumentation

Vibraphone

Marimba (4.3-octave, low A)

Glockenspiel*

Djembe*

Suspended cymbal*

Mark tree*

Shaker*

 

*Optional

Reviews

Inspired by the deserts of Southern nevada and California, “Three Scenes from the Desert” is an ensemble version of Alex Stopa’s duet of the same name. Like its predecessor, this small suite is centered around a mallet duet that is now accompanied by additional keyboard and percussion parts. In addition to is flexible instrumentation, the work can be presented as a suite or as individual movements.

As a suite, the work is separated into three movements: “Desert Sunrise,” “Waltz for a Rainy Day,” and “Red Rock Canyon.” Each movement has a unique effect that creates a nice complement to the suite. While the order is not predetermined, “Red Rock Canyon” is high energy and features the most definitive ending, while “Waltz for a Rainy Day” ends somewhat abruptly. Therefore, if the work is played as a suite, it would work best in score order. The most compelling movement is certainly “Desert Sunrise,” as it features several transitions in thematic material, all with a moderate tempo groove in the djembe and a thick rhythmic counterpoint between the ensemble parts. It should be noted that the optional marimba part is written for four mallets and calls for single alternating, double vertical, adn double lateral strokes, while the remaining parts are written for two mallets and are easily accessible for the intermediate player.

“Waltz for a Rainy Day” is slow and methodical, as the title suggests, but doesn’t feature a particularly memorable melody, allowing for a Zen-like respite  before the energized “Red Rock Canyon.” In “Red Rock Canyon,” the main motive is a four-over-three polyrhythm that is used thematically through the ensemble and is fully notated to be easy to read. While the rhythmic interaction is heightened, the movement doesn’t feature a clear melody, allowing the piece to settle into a trance-like groove.

This work is straightforward in conception, and with flexible instrumentation it could be interesting for the high school or college percussion ensemble. The groove-oriented stasis within each movement makes the work accessible for the audience and if needed would be functional as transition music during a lengthy set change. The score and parts are well engraved, and the accompanying CD includes a pdf version of all the parts as well as a quality audio recording for reference.

—Quintin Mallette
Percussive Notes
Vol. 56, No. 5, November 2018


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