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Rick Crittenden: Music

Invocation for Sextet Opus 24

(The TEMPO Ensemble)
March 5, 2017
Rick Crittenden, Composer

The Epicenter Music Performance Organization 

Sunday, March 5, 2017, 7:30 pm Cypress Recital Hall

Ensemble Members

David Shostac – flute

Julia Heinen – clarinet

Nancy Roth – violin, viola

Lorenz Gamma – violin 

Helen Z. Altenbach – cello 

Françoise Régnat – piano

John Magnussen – percussion

Invocation for Sextet Op. 24 (2016).......................................................Rick S. Crittenden (b. 1953)

Years ago, after 25 years of playing mainly jazz influenced music, I decided to learn more about writing for chamber ensembles, and the techniques developed by the 20th century composers. I sought out the brilliant Czech composer, Tomas Svoboda, and began several years of private study. In 2012, Tomas had a serious stroke and no longer composes. His compositions are performed all over the world and this piece is dedicated to him. One of my early sketches was a piece for wind ensemble. Tomas liked the piece and I learned from his many comments during the writing process; Delete these measures;Extend this idea. I liked the finished piece but was not satisfied with the wind ensemble writing. When I received the score call from the TEMPO ensemble, I remembered this piece. I thought it had unrealized potential and decided to rewrite the piece for sextet. The opening invokes the remembrance of Stravinsky's folk melodies. From there, the peace of a pastoral landscape develops an undertone of restless anticipation; a sense of a coming conflict; reflecting our current state of affairs. It seems respect for life and harmonious interaction with the environment and one another is being endangered by fear, materialism, and short sighted self-interest.

This was meant to be the first of three movements and it ends with reflection. The clarinet reprises the opening, embellishing and telling a story of a better world for our families and loved ones. A world that values the diversity of a multi-cultural tapestry, peaceful coexistence and a pristine environment.