A fast paced, rhythmic gem. The timpanist has the opportunity to perform complex, strictly metered rhythms as well as some rubato sections of free playing. The score calls for extensive hand drumming techniques, and for various preparations of the drums, as well as requiring the performer to ‘explore’ timbres and nuances within the dents of the bowls.
Genre: Timpani with Electronic Accompaniment | # of Players: 1 + CD
Level: Medium Difficult | Duration: 6:10
4 timpani, light towel or cloth, 3 temple gongs
Animism for Prepared Timpani and Tape is based on a thirteen measure theme in mixed meter, which is initially stated in measure four. When superimposed over a 5/8 time signature (as in the closing moments of the piece), this theme will occupy ten and one-half measures. Most of the piece contains events which are strictly metered and must line up with the tape precisely to be effective. These sections are characterized by traditional time signatures and solid barlines. In the ‘rubato’ and ‘semi-rubato’ sections, however, an ‘x’ signature is used to denote ‘free time,’ and dotted barlines indicate that the performer is to play freely, while the tape may or may not continue in metered time. Approximate durations are provided (in seconds) for each event during these sections, and appropriate cues are provided to bring the two parts together when necessary. Three pitches are used in the piece, executed mainly by the tape part.
When pitches are of importance to the player, the score will provide them above each notehead (as in mm. 148 - end). If specific pitches are not needed, instructions such as ‘lowest pitch’ or ‘gliss low to high’ are given.
This piece is intended to be played on older instruments, preferably with dents and other abnormalities, generally found in a set of school or practice drums. Since the score calls for extensive hand drumming techniques, and for various preparations of the drums, playing the piece could unduly stretch or damage the heads. In addition, the score requires the performer to ‘explore’ timbres and nuances within the dents of the bowls. Obviously, a new set of drums couldn’t serve in this capacity, possibly being dented in the process of preparation and performance.