Taking Sides (full score PDF)

Untitled Extract Pages.jpg
Untitled Extract Pages.jpg

Taking Sides (full score PDF)

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1. Dysfunction

2. Reflection

3. Consensus

solo trombone, woodwind octet, percussion, piano, contrabass

12:00

This work uses the format of a political debate as its foundation. In the frenzied, cartoonish first movement, the solo trombonist plays the role of moderator, trying to ask a musical question. The woodwind octet, divided into two complementary quartets, plays dueling variations of the question, ignoring, and eventually mocking, the trombonist. In the jazz-influenced second movement, the ensemble reflects on a lyrical theme from the first movement, leading to the reconciliation of the third movement. The trombone soloist brings the ensemble to consensus through variations of the original musical question, which morph through various jazz and popular music styles. The ensemble begins to imitate the trombonist. Ultimately, the complementary quartets discover the irony of a conflict in which both sides have more in common than they initially realize.