Resonating Sounds

Instrumentation: For large orchestra. Commissioned by the West-Eastern DIVAN Orchestra, 2014/2018

Year: 2018

Duration: 15 min

Resonating Sounds for Large Orchestra (2014)

The title Resonating Sounds refers to an echo, or a reminiscence of sound, lingering after the vast chords slowly fade away… This sonic image opens the work as the whole orchestra plays an immense cluster, followed by a delicate string section of transparent melodic fragments in high register.

This contract between intense, concrete and subtle, somewhat abstract, events continues throughout the course of the piece and helps shape its overall formal structure. The work is written in two main movements, divided into sections and played without a pause. While the first movement is relatively tranquil in nature, the second moves towards extremes of expression, such as: very high and low registers of brass and strings; abrupt changes of tempi and dynamics; and massive “tutti” elements played by the entire orchestra followed by chamber-like sections of piano and flutes. The final section of the work includes a recapitulation of previous events and thus provides a sense of closure. The idea of echo/resonance and reminiscence now returns in different modalities: a lyric, multi-layered, 12-part polyphonic section is played by the violas, followed by a fast, intensive passage by the whole orchestra, giving way once again to a pensive viola section…

Throughout the course of the work, a variety of textures is displayed: various polyphonic and micro-polyphonic techniques, heterophony, etc. While polyphony and various forms of imitation characterize some sections, others are vertical in nature, dominated by immense chords/clusters interspersed with inner voice leading. The sonic element also plays an important role.

The players engage in various advanced coloristic techniques, such as playing very close to the bridge; overblowing; microtonal glissandi and trills, and so forth. These techniques create a rich listening experience of shifting colors and shades, at times merging and melting into one another.

Resonating Sounds is a commissioned work for the West-Eastern Divan Orchestra. The work is dedicated to Daniel Barenboim and the West-Eastern Divan Orchestra.


Sample PDF available for download here PDF