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Jaquith: Meditation ... Separation ... for clarinet and piano
Publisher: Jeanne Inc.
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Mediation...Separation... is a work borne from reflections
on our relationship with technology. Inspired by Nicholas
Carr’s book The Glass Cage, it pits our perception
of the world, often highly mediated through technology,
against the hard, immovable realities of our existence.
To translate these ideas into music, the composer begins
with a slow-fast pair that represents reality. Both of
these sections are fairly dissonant, but have moments of
stark lyricism. Irregular meters such 15/16 and 5/16 are
prominently featured, symbolizing the unpredictability,
but also the excitement found in nature. The opening
pair is then recast, representing “mediated reality” in
another slow-fast pair. The chords are much less
dissonant and the angular contours are smoothed. In the
slow section of this pair, we hear cliche film-score
progressions that emphasize that this is all fantasy.
The fast portion begins with a gentle, undulating
texture. Although this continues for a while, a sharp
burst suddenly intrudes, only to be overtaken by the
previous undulating texture. Several other sharp bursts
appear, eventually taking over the section, which now
takes on the character of reality, using musical ideas
from the first fast section. With one final effort
however, the harshness of reality is overcome and we
return to a peaceful landscape. Once again however, the
insistent striking of a dissonant chord overtakes the
music and reality, in all of its unpredictable glory
overtakes the work and bludgeons us for a few brief
moments before the work concludes.
Total duration approximately 10 minutes.
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Click here for sample pages
Audio sample from Jaquith: Meditation ... Separation ... (measures 1-9; 19-66)
A video of a complete performance is also available by clicking here
Click here for bio information on Austin Jaquith
Click here for grading explanation