Interruption and Meditation for Solo Clarinet
I actively ascribe to the idea of "curious practice" to guide my development as a musician, and have set it as a cornerstone of my teaching curriculum as well. This means I prioritize time to explore new sounds and techniques, often without a particular end goal in mind. Lately, I've been trying to take some of these ideas, and craft them into a short composition, ostensibly taking musical fragments that might otherwise toil away in my own practice and forcing myself to make concrete musical decisions. I've been setting aside some longer practice blocks to achieve the development and completion of a particular set of ideas. Within this process, my practice usually unfolds as: exploring sounds, improvising variations, creating transitions, notating ideas, and recording the final notation.
This is my first completed idea of this series, with the program notes below delivering more information on the basis of the piece.
Interruption and Meditation
Interruption and Meditation is a work born out of improvisations inspired by the compositions of William O. Smith. The impetus for some of the multiphonics and timbral variations are derived from the first movement of Smith’s Variants for Solo Clarinet. This movement, entitled “Singing,” is simply two lines, and threads multiphonics alongside single pitches and trills. I aimed to also commit to short, concise melodies to further highlight the subtle changes in texture and pitch brought forth by the sixteen “non-traditional” fingerings included within the composition. Working more on saxophone, I also wanted to explore the clarinet’s potential for disjunct dyad multiphonics brought forth from the instrument’s missing harmonic partials. The piece was written over the span of one afternoon as a series of improvisations that were interrupted by various daily tasks. I then tasked myself with creating order from my improvisations, making musical decisions, and notating and recording a final version of my explorations.