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Möbius Loop (2000)

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Instrumentation: Saxophone Quartet (soprano, alto, tenor, baritone) and Orchestra (flute, oboe, clarinet, bassoon, 2 horns, C trumpet, trombone, 2 percussion, harp, piano, (3) violin I, (3) violin II, (4 ) viola, (3) cello, (2) contrabass)
Duration: 18’
Commission: Commissioned by the Rascher Saxophone Quartet.
Notes: Möbius Loop is a one movement work. It was written in the months directly before and after the death of my mother. That time period was perhaps the most emotional in my life. The slow reflective middle section of this work is a tribute to her. Most of the music in Möbius Loop, however, is upbeat and hard driving, and was directly inspired by my energetic seven-year-old daughter, Sara Rosenblum. In fact, it is from a playful piano improvisation of hers that the opening measures of the piece originates. As a composer, I am fascinated by hybrid musical styles in which widely varying cultures and traditions merge or even clash. I often find myself trying to create such musics. In Möbius Loop, my interest in popular music, freer jazz forms, and Cuban music, is reflected. The work also combines two tuning systems, the normal twelve note equal tempered system and a twenty one note-to-the-octave "just" system I designed to be used in conjunction with the twelve note equal tempered system. The title, Möbius Loop, refers to the Möbius Strip, a twisted triangular shaped figure that signifies cyclic transformation and lifecycles. The work is framed by one big loop; the hard-driving and rhythmic opening material returns at the end. Working in from both ends of the piece brings one to the quiet and still music in the middle. There are also loops within loops. When new musical material is presented in the body of the work it is almost always contrasted and then repeated to form smaller loops within larger ones. This concept is reflected on many levels within the piece. Möbius Loop is dedicated to the memory of my mother Sonia Rosenblum, my first inspiration, and my daughter Sara Rosenblum, one of my continuing inspirations.
Reviews: Read
Recordings: BMOP/sound 1032, Rascher Saxophone Quartet, Boston Modern Orchestra Project, Gil Rose, conductor
Availability: C.F. Peters Corporation.
World Premiere: March 23, 2000, Rascher Saxophone Quartet, notabu.ensemble neue musik. Tonhalle, Dusseldorf
Notable Performances:
January 20, 2007, Rascher Saxophone Quartet, Boston Modern Orchestra Project Jordan Hall, Boston
February 6, 2002, Rascher Saxophone Quartet, MOTE Chamber Orchestra, Bellefield Auditorium, Pittsburgh