I’m Still Here, the sixth poem from Ocean Poems, sets the beautiful poem of the same name by Jonathan Talberg, Director of Choral, Vocal, & Opera Studies at California State University, Long Beach. The poem is dedicated to Al Talberg (1928-2018), Dr. Talberg’s father. The piece opens with an insistent rhythmic motor, which is passed among the parts throughout the piece. The constant motion of the repeated text symbolizes the continuing presence of our loved ones, stating “I’m here. I’m still here.”. This rhythmic motif continues in various permutations until the final chord, finally resting on the words “I’m still here twixt sea and sky”, reminding us that our loved ones are always with us.

 

This piece may be performed as a stand-alone piece or paired with When We’re Gone 10,000 Years as a complete suite. This piece would be suitable for advanced high school, collegiate, and professional choirs.

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When We’re Gone 10,000 Years from Ocean Poems sets the beautiful poem of the same name by Jonathan Talberg, Director of Choral, Vocal, & Opera Studies at California State University, Long Beach. This piece uses hocket-like interplay between the vocal parts and metric displacement to create rhythmic propulsion. There is a limited set of rhythmic motifs used throughout the piece, including eighth note and quarter note trios, triplets, and metric displacement. The technique of text painting is used for certain words to bring the text to life, such as soaring, howling, and tumbling.

 

This piece may be performed as a stand-alone piece or paired with I’m Still Here as a complete suite. This piece would be suitable for advanced high school, collegiate, and professional choirs.

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The Contemporary Child: A Set of Eleven Contemporary Pieces for the Beginner to Intermediate Piano Student introduces various 20th-century techniques, such as polymodality, aleatory (chance music), and additive processes to the beginner to intermediate piano student. These pieces are designed to be playable by younger hands while still teaching important modern musical concepts. Each piece can be played by itself, as part of an abridged set, or as part of the full set.

 

  1. Lemonade at Home
  2. Shadow Melody
  3. Folk Song
  4. Black Forest
  5. The Elephant and the Mouse
  6. Choose Your Own Adventure! No. 1
  7. The March of Memories
  8. Choose Your Own Adventure! No. 2
  9. Grasshopper
  10. Add On (Additive Processes)
  11. The Enchanted Castle (Duet for 4-hands)
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I. Whirlpool
II. Tritonic
III. The Golden Spinning Wheel
IV. Cell-Phone Symphony

Solo Piano Suite is suite for solo piano containing four contrasting short pieces. Each movement can stand alone, as part of an abridged set, or as part of the entire suite.

Whirlpool is based on a flourishes of color inspired by Claude Debussy. It is in the Mixolydian mode, which lacks the tension-filled raised leading tone found in the major scale. This gives the piece a calmer and more soothing feel.

In sharp contrast to Whirlpool, Tritonic is harmonically jarring and unsettling as it is based on quartal stacks of tritones, an interval which has long been viewed in the music world as unstable. The piece also uses the cross-rhythm of three-against-two, creating a syncopated feel between the right and left hands.

The Golden Spinning Wheel utilizes fast, pianistic turns to represent the mechanics of a spinning wheel.

Cell-phone Symphony is a Prokofiev-inspired piece with a simple theme accompanied by odd and sometimes wandering harmonies. This piece explores fast registral shifts, short melodic ideas inspired by cell-phone ring tones, and advanced piano techniques, such as hand overlapping.

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Marginalia is a three-movement suite for solo piano inspired by Impressionist composer Claude Debussy, particularly his piano preludes. The term “marginalia” refers to the notes found within the margin of a book. The three movements in Marginalia live in their own structural, tonal, and rhythmic world. All three pieces rely heavily on the use of seconds and sevenths, which are inherently ambiguous and lead the ear away from traditional harmony. Marginalia I opens with a colorful, rhythmic flourish similar to the flourishes found in Debussy’s piano prelude Bruyeres. These flourishes are found throughout Marginalia I and II. Marginalia III opens with a pentatonic melody, a favored scale of Debussy, which is then accompanied by quartal stacks.

This set would fit nicely into any chamber or solo recital, particularly alongside pieces by Debussy or Ravel.

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