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Percussion Concerto
2 versions: see instrumentation lists below
(2003/2004)

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This single-movement composition was originally composed for Li-Feng (Ji-Hong) Cheng as a concerto for percussion soloist with orchestra. He later requested new arrangements of the concerto for his Succession Percussion Ensemble. There are now two adaptations of the concerto for percussion ensemble. The first one is for soloist with 10 players, a later version is for soloist with 6 players.

The potential for dialogue between drums, vibraphone and an ensemble is what first inspired this concerto. Therefore the soloist must often alternate quickly between vibraphone and drums while engaging the ensemble in musical conversations. Keeping with this conception, the important musical ideas are played by vibraphone and drums, while the soloist's other instruments are primarily used to enhance color and dramatic effects. In terms of character, this piece makes much use of the energy and drive that people often associate with percussion instruments. Although the movement begins slowly and mysteriously, with a vibraphone solo, the tempo eventually increases until drums shatter that mood. Thereafter, syncopation, fast drum fills, bright colors and sharp contrasts characterize much of the music.

A complete performance of the original orchestral version of this concerto can be viewed on YouTube. That performance includes a cadenza.

(performance time ca. 9 minutes without the optional cadenza)


Instrumentation
(1st version: soloist with 9 other players)

Multiple Percussion 1:
Glockenspiel, Tubular Chimes

Multiple Percussion 2:
Crotales, Tam-Tam, Crash Cymbals, Sus. Cymbal

Multiple Percussion 3:
Bass Drum, Tam-Tam (may be shared with Multi-2)

Timpani (five drums)

Xylophone

Marimba 1
(also plays glockenspiel--may be shared with Multi-1)

Marimba 2

Marimba 3
(this part requires a low C)

Piano (4 hands)

the soloist plays:
vibraphone
3 small roto-toms
5 tom-toms
2 steel pipes
1 large sus. cymbal
1 kick drum


Instrumentation
(2nd version: soloist with 6 other players)

Multiple Percussion 1: Glockenspiel, Tubular Chimes

Multiple Percussion 2:
Crotales, Tam-Tam, Crash Cymbals, Sus. Cymbal

Multiple Percussion 3:
Bass Drum, Tam-Tam

Timpani (five drums)

Marimba 1

Marimba 2
(this part requires a low C)

the soloist plays:
vibraphone
3 small roto-toms
5 tom-toms
2 steel pipes
1 large sus. cymbal
1 kick drum