Program Notes: D, E, F
“In the interest of full disclosure” is associated with legal, political, and commercial situations, but has made its way into interpersonal situations as well. Is full disclosure possible on a personal level? The act of disclosing inevitably changes what is disclosed, reveals new connections and implications, is nuanced by the one to whom the disclosure is made, and the context of the disclosure. Consider the onion metaphor, in which each layer that is peeled off reveals another layer closer to the core. Add the further complexity that our act of peeling might alter the next layer, revealing it to be, in fact, an artichoke, the next a radish. This morphing onion metaphor begins to get at my sense of the non-static nature of personal disclosure, and it is that sense which infused the writing of this piece. Published by JOMAR Press.
Disclosure was premiered in July 2004 at Interlochen Arts Camp by Barbara Sturgis-Everett, violin, Timothy McAllister, alto saxophone, and Eric Stomberg, bassoon.
Fascination at a Distance
Two separate entities mutually and continually act upon each other while maintaining their individual integrities. Change and development, brought about by both immediate and long-term responsiveness to each other, are continuous. In the last of four sections, the old tune Fascination grows out of the pitch material and is quoted, with very thick harmonies, several times. This is a demanding, virtuoso piece.
Faster was produced in the Bowdoin College Electronic Studio where Munn was a director from 1986-89. the piece consists of a series of thirty notes played over and over for six minutes, with each successive note slightly shorter in duration than the preceding one, the effect being that of a long, continuous global accelerando.
Mathematician Jay A. Wood, using an infinite series and integral calculus, provided very precise information about the pacing of the notes within this framework. A smaller accelerando, on a repeated note occurs within each note of the global accelerando and is coupled with a continuous note "flurry" which utilizes the same pitch series as the global accelerando. Thus, the composition takes on what mathematicians would call a "self-similar nature." (not currently available)
A Fine Garment, A Gentle Weave, Woven With Whispers and Exclamation Points
This composition is more autobiographical than any of my other compositions: a very intense relationship develops between two people. A physical and emotional separation occurs. In the midst of awful loneliness there are flashbacks to the earlier relationship. The relationship is renewed but this time it is much more richly textured, more resilient and more positive. This basic story can be the template for all sorts of relationships--between lovers, between a parent and a child, and between friends. Quite apart from the specific relationship I was thinking of, I hope that you as listeners can find your own experiences resonating in the musical story. A Fine Garment was written for the Camerata Quintet in 1998 and was premiered by them at Western Illinois University on March 7, 1999.
Five Animal Songs
The five individual songs are titled Mouse, Shrew, Vole; Bird; Merry-go-round; Horses; and Mice. They are all characterized by powerful text images, mixed meter, and a strong tonal basis. The third song is for 3-part women only. Text quote from Horses: "Our water was almost gone when the captain said the horses must go overboard."
Commissioned by Constance DeFotis at Harvard University, Nina Nash-Robertson at Central Michigan University, Chet Alwes at University of Illinois, and Craig Johnson at Otterbein College. Intended for performance by good college choirs. Published by Yelton Rhodes Music. Recorded by Capstone. College and beyond.
Forays and Trysts
Whimsy is the order of the day in Forays and Trysts. Each of the three short movements is characterized by a flight of fancy: a bit of singing in Glass Ceiling; left hand pizzicato in La De Da; and, in Agatha, a quotation from Agatha Christie’s Detective Poirot character.
A Fraction of Your Grace
A Fraction of Your Grace was inspired by the wonderful grace shown by a friend whose family was dealt a terrible blow. The phrase comes from a letter in which I said "I hope that I can find even a fraction of your grace should something similar happen to me or my family."
Sections based on quartal chords and sections based on open fifths stated in a rhythmic ostinato move slowly around the circle of fifths. Motives derived from extensions of the basic quintal and quartal structures provide most of the melodic material. Published by Arsis Press.