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19291922
19291922

Dystopia

for percussion ensemble

By Jim Casella

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Dystopia (for percussion ensemble). Composed by Jim Casella. Percussion Ensemble. For glockenspiel, xylophone, 2 vibraphones (with bows & mallets), two marimbas (low A), standard set of 4 timpani, piano, chimes, waterphone (or bowed music stand), 2 suspended cymbals, triangle, 2 cowbells, finger cymbals, temple blocks, military drum, tam t (15 players). Medium-Advanced. Score and parts on CD-ROM. 16 pages. Duration 4'00". Published by Tapspace Publications (TA.TSPCE-34).

Dystopia was written to imitate a tense, action-packed, horror soundtrack within the percussion ensemble setting. Using a fairly large instrumentation including piano, some interesting textures are achieved by way of a bowed waterphone, tam tam, and vibraphones, and the gutteral, groaning bass drum effects. Frequent use of tight intervals and dissonant melodies add to the tension driven by a syncopated ostinato in 5/4. Essentially, this is program music designed to take listeners on a journey of their own images. There isn't a literal story being told here, but its structure takes us from quiet mystery to suspenseful pursuit, then action-based escape. These dramatic elements should allow each performer or listener to choose his or her own adventure and have a little fun letting the music create a scary story line of their own. Dystopia received it's premier to an enthusiastic audience at the 2008 Midwest Band and Orchestra Clinic in Chicago, Illinois. This piece comes with a full, bound score and includes a CD-Rom containing an audio recording and all individual parts available for printing.

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