for Solo Percussion (Marimba & Woodblock).
Duration: 3 mins.
Commissioned and premiered by Cameron Kennedy. November 2010, Queensland Conservatory of Music, Brisbane, Australia.
This is a piece containing a newly composed tune in the style of a reel. The reel is the most commonly played tune form in traditional Irish dance music. In tune collections reels are usually notated in 4/4 as streams of constant quavers without any ornamentation, articulation or rhythmic deviation. In practice, traditional musicians add a lot more detail to this skeleton notation.
A good traditional musician will constantly vary the tune melodically and rhythmically, some musicians even add extra beats which take the music out of a regular 4/4 beat. Musicians will also regularly change phrasing so that different rhythmic divisions like a 3+3+2 (8/8) rhythm might occur. I use this 8/8 rhythm a lot in this piece.
The tune goes through variation techniques derived from traditional Irish music, including ornamentations known as cuts and trebles and the note flexibility which means some notes can be natural the first time the tune is played but sharp or flat the next time.
The performer is expected to spontaneously vary the rhythmic articulations and phrasing in a manner in keeping with traditional Irish music.