When Worlds Collide (2006)

Commissioned by Lark String Quartet and Ethos Percussion Ensemble

Program note:

In When Worlds Collide, two celebrated ensembles—Lark String Quartet and Ethos Percussion Group—join forces for the first time. To mark this occasion, I have incorporated the idea of partnership into the musical conception itself, creating a super instrument with eight arms and legs. In each movement, the strings and percussion fuse in different ways, creating a distinctive color and sound: ethereal string harmonics blend with percussion bells to suggest an off-kilter music box; a disembodied march, played by muted strings, emerges from mists of cymbals and snare drums; strings players tap and pluck their instruments imitating the percussionists, who play an assortment of found objects, planks of wood and pieces of metal.

When Worlds Collide was jointly commissioned by the Lark Quartet and Ethos Percussion Ensemble, with support of the Jerome Foundation.

When Worlds Collide was first performed at Scandinavia House, New York City, on June 2, 2006, by Lark String Quartet and Ethos Percussion Group.

Listen to "tapping" first movement

Percussion Instruments:
Percussion 1
2 untuned wood instruments
2 untuned metal instruments
gock/crotales (notes A, G, F sharp, and D)
snare drum

Percussion 2
2 untuned wood instruments
glock/crotales (notes A, G, E, and D)
1 triangle

Percussion 3
2 untuned wood instruments
glock/crotales (notes A, G, F, E, D, C)
1 triangle

Percussion 4
2 untuned wood instruments
2 untuned metal instruments
glock/crotales (notes A, G, F sharp, F and D)
3 triangles

String quartet should be amplified.