by Pamela J. Marshall

for alto saxophone, trumpet, 2 trombones, 2 percussion

Duration ~10 min.


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Resonances is contemporary chamber music for six players–alto saxophone, trumpet, 2 trombones, and 2 percussion.

Percussion I – 3 temple blocks, mark tree, metal windchimes, high-pitched
bamboo windchimes, medium and low drums

Percussion II – vibraphone, 2 unpitched gongs (medium-low and medium-high)

The composer writes:

I wrote Resonances to feature Dan Duncan, trumpet, and Greg Ridlington, saxophone. They were members of Just In Time Composers and Players, a composers’ concert-presenting collective active in Boston until 2005. It was a larger ensemble than usual for our chamber music concerts because I wanted hear a resonant sound in our concert hall: the large, stone space of St. Cecilia Church in Boston.

“A melodic seed of a descending 6th (sometimes varied to a tritone) led to rich, occasionally consonant harmonies. Different combinations of the instruments provide contrasting textures. The wind instruments play energetic chorales punctuated by unpitched percussion. The trumpet and saxophone have an extended conversation over a syncopated texture in the low instruments and percussion. A gentler chorale ends the piece, ringing with the sound of gongs.

Thinner textures occur with a trumpet-percussion duet and a vibraphone solo interspersed with melody in the low instruments. Echoes and doublings occur throughout, such as vibraphone notes that highlight single melody notes and ends of phrases that are repeated in another voice, as if to keep the sound from dying away.”


Listen to a live performance of Resonances, streaming hosted by SoundClick. In this earlier version, the percussion was covered by one player.


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