I have been commissioned by Steven Maxwell, tuba professor at Kansas State University, to write a piece for tuba and piano. Recently, I was inspired by watching Ken Burns film on the National Parks broadcast on PBS. What really inspired me was the ability of individuals to garner support and preserve our natural wonders for future generations. This gave me an idea for the piece. I'm calling it "Grass Roots" and I'm thinking of three movements: "A Voice in the Wilderness" which we be slow and introspective, "Opposition" which will be fast, contrapuntal and more dissonant, and "Joining Forces" which will begin quietly and become triumphant.
I have begun the first movement and I am very pleased with how it is going. It begins very rubato with tuba being to lone voice in the wilderness with the piano serving as punctuations. When the tempo becomes steadier at measure 9, the beauty of the wilderness is reflected in both the lyrical line and the rich harmony. Measures 12 and 13 have some wandering chromaticism that hints at the uncertainty that lies ahead.
To see and hear what I have composed thus far, go to http://www.cooppress.net/grass_roots_blog.html