Soloist creates sleight-of-hand improvisations that may leave the listener wondering: is this another UFO sighting?
-- Michael Daugherty
This movement follows the tradition of improvisation for percussion. While other musicians may have written out music, or a structure to follow, percussionists don’t always have that luxury. This requires us to use our ears in a way that listens, interprets, and communicates along with the other musicians. The unknown the percussionist faces is in real time: I do not know what the other musician is thinking, but I can guess and approximate in order to communicate back to them. Facing this unknown requires a heightened focus on a source other than my own.
This particular movement incorporates a unique duo of solo contrabassoon and percussion. In addition to playing improvisations, the percussion instruments themselves are at the discretion of the performer. I searched for instruments that compliment in addition to contrast with the contrabassoon. Keeping the alien theme alive, I incorporate sounds that aren’t normally produced by a particular instrument to create sounds foreign to human ears.