Fanfare For You (A Superhero)
for brass and percussion
Fanfare For You (A Superhero) was composed for the Eastman School of Music and the New England Conservatory to commemorate the beginning of a new academic year (2019 – 2020). It was inspired by the feelings associated with the start of something new, especially the excitement of anticipation and the apprehension of uncertainty. This is a familiar moment in our lives, and I thought I would celebrate all of us (“You”) and a superhero power I believe we all possess – the ability to recognize beauty in every moment, including disappointment and failure.
The work represents a journey through time. It begins with the Tambourine (one person) playing a simple long-short rhythm. That rhythm dominates the piece. It also serves as an invitation to join the “dance party of pulses” that will reveal themselves as the work progresses. The Tambourine’s invitation is quickly taken up by the Vibraphone, also playing a long-short rhythm, but now adding the note “A”. The Tubular Chimes disrupts the pattern and then more players join in with subtle variations of the thematic rhythm, while always on the note “A”. There is beauty in simplicity. Things start to heat up as more players quickly join the “party of pulses” and complexities begin to emerge, much like the complexities that emerge in the bonds we form with other people. The work moves through cycles of this opening, all the while adding subtle variations and opportunities to neutralize the joy. The drama lies in rescuing this joyful timeline from the currents that seem intent on derailing the celebration. The rescue is the simple act of recognizing and embracing the musical beauty when those more tragic moments reveal themselves.
The work is dedicated to Jill Abbinanti in loving celebration of her birthday. She is a new friend, and already a profound presence in my life. She is a superhero!
Fanfare For You is about 5 minutes in duration.
4 French Horns in F, 3 Trumpets in C, 2 Tenor Trombones, Bass Trombone, Tuba, Timpani & 3 Percussion Players
Percussion Instruments Required
Vibraphone, Tubular Chimes, Glockenspiel, Crash Cymbals, Small Suspended Cymbal, Medium Suspended Cymbal, Large Tam-tam, Tambourine, Vibraslap, Ratchet, Snare Drum, Large Bass Drum (shared)
Distribution of Percussion Instruments
Player 1: Tambourine, Crash Cymbals, Ratchet, Large Bass Drum (shared)
Player 2: Tubular Chimes, Small Suspended Cymbal, Vibraslap, Glockenspiel, Large Bass Drum (shared), Snare Drum, Medium Suspended Cymbal
Player 3: Vibraphone, Large Tam-tam