Mixed Sextet – Dreamzone

Instrumentation: Flute, Clarinet, Violin, Piano, Double Bass, Trombone
Duration:                 6 minutes
Year:                           2016


Program Notes

Dreamzone (2016) is a short one movement work for sextet that explores the fragmentation and transformation of a melodic gesture.  When thinking of ideas for this new work for Ensemble mise-en, I had for no particular reason the 3rd movement of Poulenc’s Flute Sonata (1957) trapped in my head in a perpetual loop.  For a long time now, that piece has been one of my favorites in the flute literature having heard it in one of the first concerts I attended in the UK.  Titled ‘Presto Giocoso’, it is a gay (as in happy) and rhythmic rondo in 2/4.  I was attracted to the movement by its liveliness, and sought to incorporate into my new piece.

The piece begins with a direct quote from the Flute Sonata (1957), taking the first two bars and scoring it for the full ensemble.  From then onwards, I subject the material to fragmentation and transformation, introducing various dissonances and distortions as the piece goes on.  When the piece ends, there is no longer anything left that reminds us of the original quotation.  The title Dreamzone alludes to the sense of flux and blurring that happens throughout the piece, with unexpected outbursts and interruptions that border on the chaotic.

Performance History

  • Apr 07, 2016, Ensemble Mise-En
    Illinois State University Red Note New Music Festival
    Moon Young-Ha conducting
  • Nov 23, 2017, University of Toronto Faculty of Music Performers
    Doctoral Composition Recital, University of Toronto Walter Hall
    Roydon Tse conducting
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