Make Music Day New York: Concertos For Buildings At Greene StWhen I got the call from Make Music NY that they wanted to commission a piece from me for their 2017 iteration of their “Concerto for Buildings” project, I was so excited.  First of all, the concept of this project alone is tantalizing: the resonant, hollow bricks of a building on a corner of Greene St. in Soho provide percussionists with materials, the haunting sounds of which are integrated with a standard large instrument ensemble placed fully on view in the middle of the street. Second, the performers were high schoolers: the lovely players of Mantra Youth Percussion performing alongside the dedicated and talented students of the Rahway High School Wind Ensemble, under the direction of Miguel Bolivar. Lastly, the project was being coordinated by the lovely and amazing Joe Bergen of Mantra Percussion fame. (Joe and I worked together on my piece Elements for the Here Arts Center last year and had a blast collaborating on a weirdo interactive-performance-art electronics-assisted percussion-storytelling experience. whew!) I jumped at the chance! What resulted was a piece called “Cloud Noodles” that you can hear on June 21st as part of the massive city-wide party that is the Make Music NY festival! What I came up with was a partially open score that would let the kids use their arpeggio skills to create clouds of chordal areas passing each other by with rich whimsy as a steady pulse was maintained and embroidered by the noble percussionists pounding at the walls of Greene Street.  Take a peek at the score:

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I broke both the percussionists and the winds into “Left” ensemble and “Right” ensemble to create an antiphonal effect. Miguel, the wonderful director of the group, chooses in each performance the number of repeats taken for each cell.  The kids are having fun picking the inversions of their arpeggios and the percussionists are having fun holding the gang together with their driving beat Come have a listen!

Make Music Day New York: Concertos For Buildings At Greene St


Cloud Noodles
part of Make Music New York
Wednesday, June 21st at 5pm
on Greene Street between Grand and Broome


[NOTE ON PHOTOS: photos this site were added after the fact, so these are images of the performance itself. Thanks to Getty Images for taking the pics!]