for percussion ensemble (5.5')
instrumentation (7 players):
two vibraphones, four marimbas (4.5 & 5.0 octave), glockenspiel, crotales, cajon
Inspired by a fond musical experience in Spain, Duende is the fusion of many musical idioms I absorbed during the spring and summer of 2017. In the months leading up to the work’s composition, I began to explore the music I grew up listening to as a child at a much deeper level and went through a “phase” (mostly Afro-Cuban genres and 1980s works of Steve Reich) where I gravitated towards music that moved me both physically and viscerally. In doing so, I recalled the beautiful performance of flamenco I witnessed during the summer of 2013 in Madrid.
The term “duende” has a variety of meanings in Spanish. In flamenco, it refers to a state of inspiration and extreme—almost magical—perceptiveness which only “overtakes” a performer in rare occasions. Others may perceive a “duende” as a sort of supernatural spirit, which, for some reason, reminds me of the work’s main rhythmic motive.
Duende was commissioned by Dr. Andrew Eldridge and the University of Texas at Arlington Percussion Ensemble and premiered in November 2017.
World Premiere: November 10, 2017 (Indianapolis, IN)