Coming of AgeComing of Age
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Coming of Age

for solo marimba and percussion quartet
Level: Medium
Duration: 5:30
Personnel: 5 players
Product ID : TSPCE18-010
Price: $35.00
Item #: TSPCE18-010

Formats Available:


Description

As the title suggests, Chad Heiny’s Coming of Age attempts to narrate a coming-of-age story where the solo marimba part depicts the main character responding and evolving to an ever complicated world, depicted by the percussion quartet. The harmonic language used in the piece is tense at times but ends optimistically, as if looking forward with hope to the future. The solo marimba part is definitely achievable by a decent high school marimbist but was also written with the intermediate to advanced undergraduate player in mind. 

Coming of Age was commissioned by Evan Brown and the North Allegheny High School Percussion Ensemble. it is dedicated to Chad’s son, Christopher Heiny.

This piece ships with a full, bound score and includes a CD-ROM containing an audio recording and all individual parts available for printing.

Instrumentation

  • Crotales (low octave) or Glockenspiel
  • 2 Vibraphones (+ 2 bass or cello bows)
  • Marimba (4.3-octave, low A)
  • Drums (kick drum, large djembe, cajon)
  • Metal (Ride cymbal, small crash cymbal, sizzle cymbal, small trashy metal sound/instrument)
  • Accessories (low/med/high woodblocks, mark tree, 2 small shakers of differing pitch)

Reviews

There is not a lot of accompanied marimba repertoire directed to the intermediate performer. Chad Heiny helps fill that void with this piece for featured marimbist and percussion quartet. ‘’Coming of Age” uses idiomatic material and tasteful accompaniment to make a minimalist composition that is pleasant to listen to and enjoyable to perform.

The piece is segmented into an introduction, a large A section, a transitional drum-break, a large B section, and an outro. The introduction is focused on a perpetual C-sharp pedal while hints of the upcoming melodies are played on the high end of the marimba and the bowed vibraphones. The A section is based on an eight-measure motif presented by the soloist, which is composed of a consistent low C-sharp in the left hand and a simple melody in the right. The vibraphone accompaniment is comprised of ‘’dry-to-wet’’ gestures, in which either a short line is played while gradually lowering the pedal, or the first notes are played with mallets and the last are bowed. These techniques Heiny has made use of are both quite inventive. The forward motion is created simply by lowering the bass note by a step at the repeat of the eight-measure motif while keeping the melody exactly the same. This is a classic minimal- ist technique that looks simple on paper but is incredibly compelling in performance.

After a drum break where the cajón and djembe are introduced, we arrive at the B section. Here, the accompaniment is groove based, being focused on the hand drums, and the soloist is given different motivic material that gradually changes centricity to A-natural, taking the piece to the relative major of where it began. The outro combines the melodic material of the B section with the dry-to-wet vibraphone accompaniment from the A section.

Although it is up to the performer, it is possible for the marimbist to play the entire first half of the piece with two mallets. The second half must be played with four mallets to accomplish the necessary double verticals and play the idiomatic permutation-based motif. The vibraphone players only ever need a pair of mallets or a bow, but they do occasionally need to play from the opposite side of the instrument, so either memorization or strategically placed music will be necessary. All these parts are based on simple patterns, so memorization is not implausible.

This piece comes highly recommended for an advanced high school ensemble or an undergraduate college group. It is a well-com- posed piece that uses unique sound gestures, contemporary minimalist techniques, and fun grooves that will make it popular among its performers.

—Kyle Cherwinski
Percussive Notes 
Vol. 57, No. 3, July 2019

Description

As the title suggests, Chad Heiny’s Coming of Age attempts to narrate a coming-of-age story where the solo marimba part depicts the main character responding and evolving to an ever complicated world, depicted by the percussion quartet. The harmonic language used in the piece is tense at times but ends optimistically, as if looking forward with hope to the future. The solo marimba part is definitely achievable by a decent high school marimbist but was also written with the intermediate to advanced undergraduate player in mind. 

Coming of Age was commissioned by Evan Brown and the North Allegheny High School Percussion Ensemble. it is dedicated to Chad’s son, Christopher Heiny.

This piece ships with a full, bound score and includes a CD-ROM containing an audio recording and all individual parts available for printing.

Instrumentation

  • Crotales (low octave) or Glockenspiel
  • 2 Vibraphones (+ 2 bass or cello bows)
  • Marimba (4.3-octave, low A)
  • Drums (kick drum, large djembe, cajon)
  • Metal (Ride cymbal, small crash cymbal, sizzle cymbal, small trashy metal sound/instrument)
  • Accessories (low/med/high woodblocks, mark tree, 2 small shakers of differing pitch)

Reviews

There is not a lot of accompanied marimba repertoire directed to the intermediate performer. Chad Heiny helps fill that void with this piece for featured marimbist and percussion quartet. ‘’Coming of Age” uses idiomatic material and tasteful accompaniment to make a minimalist composition that is pleasant to listen to and enjoyable to perform.

The piece is segmented into an introduction, a large A section, a transitional drum-break, a large B section, and an outro. The introduction is focused on a perpetual C-sharp pedal while hints of the upcoming melodies are played on the high end of the marimba and the bowed vibraphones. The A section is based on an eight-measure motif presented by the soloist, which is composed of a consistent low C-sharp in the left hand and a simple melody in the right. The vibraphone accompaniment is comprised of ‘’dry-to-wet’’ gestures, in which either a short line is played while gradually lowering the pedal, or the first notes are played with mallets and the last are bowed. These techniques Heiny has made use of are both quite inventive. The forward motion is created simply by lowering the bass note by a step at the repeat of the eight-measure motif while keeping the melody exactly the same. This is a classic minimal- ist technique that looks simple on paper but is incredibly compelling in performance.

After a drum break where the cajón and djembe are introduced, we arrive at the B section. Here, the accompaniment is groove based, being focused on the hand drums, and the soloist is given different motivic material that gradually changes centricity to A-natural, taking the piece to the relative major of where it began. The outro combines the melodic material of the B section with the dry-to-wet vibraphone accompaniment from the A section.

Although it is up to the performer, it is possible for the marimbist to play the entire first half of the piece with two mallets. The second half must be played with four mallets to accomplish the necessary double verticals and play the idiomatic permutation-based motif. The vibraphone players only ever need a pair of mallets or a bow, but they do occasionally need to play from the opposite side of the instrument, so either memorization or strategically placed music will be necessary. All these parts are based on simple patterns, so memorization is not implausible.

This piece comes highly recommended for an advanced high school ensemble or an undergraduate college group. It is a well-com- posed piece that uses unique sound gestures, contemporary minimalist techniques, and fun grooves that will make it popular among its performers.

—Kyle Cherwinski
Percussive Notes 
Vol. 57, No. 3, July 2019



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