Faye-Ellen Silverman

No Strings

Year: 1982

Duration (in minutes): 11'39;

Difficulty: High (professional)

Category: larger chamber ensembles - more than 4 players, mixed instrument ensemble

Instruments: alto, alto saxophone, any female voice, any low voice, any male voice, any saxophone, any voice, any woodwind, bass voice, bassoon, clarinet, flute, horn, oboe, percussion, piccolo, trombone, trumpet, tuba

Publisher: Subito Music Corporation

Description: The title “No Strings” refers both to the instrumentation and to the independent use of these instruments in solo passages and, at times, with specifically assigned musical motives. This independent usage seemed especially appropriate for a piece written for the Brooklyn Philharmonic, an orchestra of virtuoso soloists.
The first movement (“Basically Brass”) features the alto saxophone (an instrument with both brass and woodwind qualities), often accompanied by soloistic brass instruments. The second movement (“Mixed Means”), which opens with an extended passage for timpani alone, features short, seemingly unrelated motives in several instruments which gradually come together. The last movement (“Wandering Woodwinds”) again balances fully orchestrated passages with solos. This third movement, which contains references to the first two, ends with the individual instruments breaking away from the full ensemble, once again asserting their position of “no strings”.

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