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In the Stillness Beneath the Trees (Download)

for solo marimba with optional percussion accompaniment
Level: Med-Easy
Duration: 4:45
Personnel: 1-3 players
Release Date: 2020
Product ID : TSPCS20-017DL
Price: $15.00
Item #: TSPCS20-017DL

Formats Available:


Description

Robert Clayson’s tranquil and meditative marimba solo In the Stillness Beneath the Trees features optional percussion accompaniment and is geared toward beginning and intermediate 4-mallet players. Clayson was inspired from watching the trees outside his house sway back and forth with the wind. He tried to emulate the trees with understated writing for both the marimba solo and the optional accompaniment. 

The marimba part is playable on a 4.3-octave instrument (low A), however options for a 5-octave marimba are also provided. This is a great solo for intermediate players looking to expand their technical abilities, and the accompaniment parts can be performed by even the youngest of performers and bring another dimension of color to the landscape.  



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

Instrumentation

Glockenspiel (optional)

Vibraphone (optional)

Marimba (4-octave)*

Sizzle cymbal (optional)

*Optional 5-octave (low C)

Reviews

This permutation-based marimba solo can display the hypnotic nature and grace that the instrument is capable of. It can be performed as a true solo, or with a two-person accompaniment that can easily be sight-read by intermediate players or comfortably prepared by younger students.

The work is beautiful in its simplicity. The piece is meant to resemble the swaying of trees on a windy day. As such, it is written almost entirely in sixteenth-note arpeggios that sway up and down the instrument in a gentle, hypnotic fashion. There are slight deviations of this pattern in the form of melodic “pops” — accented notes that are played outside the established texture. These “pops” are placed in a manner that imply longer melodic gestures, which creates another layer of content for the audience to appreciate.

The optional accompaniment is meant to sup- port the longer melodic gestures implied by the “popped” marimba notes. Both of these parts are sparse and simple, mostly utilizing long notes that interact with the accented marimba notes. They grow denser and more complicated as each section approaches a cadence, but only up to simple eighth-note patterns that even novice students would be able to handle with a little instruction.

The only letdown in the work is a short section in the middle that diverts from the arpeggiated structure of the rest of the piece. For ten measures, the composer creates a new texture of moving block chords performed with rubato and active dynamic motion. It gives the soloist an opportunity for self-expression through the instrument without being tied to the hypnotic sixteenth notes of the rest of the piece. The letdown is that this section is only ten measures long. It is such a charming diversion that it could have been slightly expanded upon without being a distraction from the rest of the work.

The composer’s intent was to write a piece that he could perform with some of his youngest students being able to accompany him. While he was successful in this goal, he was also successful in creating an approachable piece of music that can be enjoyed as an intermediate soloist, an instructor with his or her students, and by just about any audience who will hear it.

—Kyle Cherwinski
Percussive Notes
Vol. 59, No. 2, April 2021

Description

Robert Clayson’s tranquil and meditative marimba solo In the Stillness Beneath the Trees features optional percussion accompaniment and is geared toward beginning and intermediate 4-mallet players. Clayson was inspired from watching the trees outside his house sway back and forth with the wind. He tried to emulate the trees with understated writing for both the marimba solo and the optional accompaniment. 

The marimba part is playable on a 4.3-octave instrument (low A), however options for a 5-octave marimba are also provided. This is a great solo for intermediate players looking to expand their technical abilities, and the accompaniment parts can be performed by even the youngest of performers and bring another dimension of color to the landscape.  



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

Instrumentation

Glockenspiel (optional)

Vibraphone (optional)

Marimba (4-octave)*

Sizzle cymbal (optional)

*Optional 5-octave (low C)

Reviews

This permutation-based marimba solo can display the hypnotic nature and grace that the instrument is capable of. It can be performed as a true solo, or with a two-person accompaniment that can easily be sight-read by intermediate players or comfortably prepared by younger students.

The work is beautiful in its simplicity. The piece is meant to resemble the swaying of trees on a windy day. As such, it is written almost entirely in sixteenth-note arpeggios that sway up and down the instrument in a gentle, hypnotic fashion. There are slight deviations of this pattern in the form of melodic “pops” — accented notes that are played outside the established texture. These “pops” are placed in a manner that imply longer melodic gestures, which creates another layer of content for the audience to appreciate.

The optional accompaniment is meant to sup- port the longer melodic gestures implied by the “popped” marimba notes. Both of these parts are sparse and simple, mostly utilizing long notes that interact with the accented marimba notes. They grow denser and more complicated as each section approaches a cadence, but only up to simple eighth-note patterns that even novice students would be able to handle with a little instruction.

The only letdown in the work is a short section in the middle that diverts from the arpeggiated structure of the rest of the piece. For ten measures, the composer creates a new texture of moving block chords performed with rubato and active dynamic motion. It gives the soloist an opportunity for self-expression through the instrument without being tied to the hypnotic sixteenth notes of the rest of the piece. The letdown is that this section is only ten measures long. It is such a charming diversion that it could have been slightly expanded upon without being a distraction from the rest of the work.

The composer’s intent was to write a piece that he could perform with some of his youngest students being able to accompany him. While he was successful in this goal, he was also successful in creating an approachable piece of music that can be enjoyed as an intermediate soloist, an instructor with his or her students, and by just about any audience who will hear it.

—Kyle Cherwinski
Percussive Notes
Vol. 59, No. 2, April 2021


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