B-flat Clarinet I-II-III
B-flat Bass Clarinet
E-flat Alto Saxophone
B-flat Tenor Saxophone
E-flat Baritone Saxophone
B-flat Trumpet I-II-III
Horn in F I-II
Percussion (3 players), including:
- Bass Drum
- Bongo Drum
- Crash Cymbals
- Mark Tree
- Snare Drum
- Suspended Cymbal
None discovered thus far.
When I began gathering ideas for this piece, in March 2020, I thought (as many did) that as unprecedented and traumatic as the pandemic was that is would soon be over. Surely, I thought, by fall this would be a Significant Moment that was behind us. As we begin the 2020-2021 school year, we are not over the pandemic. If anything, we are still squarely in the middle of it. Though the motions and routines of life go on, things are clearly not back to "business as usual." Masks are mandatory at many schools, while other colleges and high schools have opted not to hold in-person classes at all by going entirely online with their curriculum. The number of new cases of Covid-19 being reported is currently going down every day, but the numbers are still staggering.
As a result of how long this pandemic is lasting, instead of being an after-the-fact remembrance, this piece is becoming an in-the-moment snapshot of what 2020 is like for us: school and professional musicians, music educators and band directors, parents and audiences. For band students, playing music -- together -- is an important part of life. The isolation caused by the Covid-19 pandemic broke the links between students, and many have suffered emotionally in ways that we will not perhaps understand for years to come.
This piece is about the uncertainty, fear, disruption, pain and grief that all of us have gone through. No piece of music is a solution. But music MEANS something, and gives meaning to our lives; I hope that this music will help frame these experiences of 2020 in a way that shows how tenacious we can be, and offer hope for a brighter future.
There are symbols and references to 2020 throughout the piece. To note just a few that can be clearly heard in the music:
- The “pre-Corona” days are set in a lively, optimistic style. Before the outbreak things were complicated, but on the whole most people would probably have said they were mostly happy.
- When with only a little warning (the flutes start to play out of key), EVERYTHING suddenly shut down. Schools, stores, factories, restaurants, churches -- everything stopped.
- The end of the school year was conducted remotely, online, for most students in the U.S. Communication was by social media for the most part (listen for the Morse code telegraph signals -- they spell out actual messages).
- During the long summer of 2020, as many of us worked from home there was a sense of every day feeling the same -- it became hard to remember what day it was, and time just dragged on (hear the ticking of the clock and the wandering, ambiguous harmony of the vibraphone).
- As we start the fall 2020 school semester, many (but not all) schools were able to resume face-to-face classes. Bands and choirs were even able to rehearse and perform together—but not the same ways as before (hear the original theme played again, but somehow different).
- Looking forward, we don’t yet see the light at the end of the tunnel
- Program Note by composer
This piece was commissioned by a consortium of the following generous sponsors:
• Benjamin Barker, director of bands at Enumclaw (Wash.) High School • Adam Campagna, band director at W.F. West High School (Chehalis, Wash.) • Dave Eater, Levittown, Penn. • James Robinson, Virginia Beach, Va. • Cynthia Grabke, GR Austin Intermediate School (Braintree Mass.) • Janessa Hasper,Cheyenne, Wy. • Lynda Hasper, Lititz, Penn. • Rich Kuntzelman, director of bands at White River High School (Buckly, Wash.) • Greg Peterson, artistic director at Tunesmith Solutions (Melbourne, Aust.) • Lauren Schneider, Ligonier, Penn. • Mary Jean Tasillo, Pittsburgh, Penn. • Michael Walker, conductor, Keansburg, N.J.
(Needed - please join the WRP if you can help.)
None discovered thus far.
To submit a performance please join The Wind Repertory Project
Works for Winds by This Composer
- Agnus Dei (2021)
- Autumn Invasion (2010)
- COVID (2020)
- Endless Routes (2019)
- Fanfare for Us (2015)
- Five Forms (2011)
- Hope Is the Thing with Feathers (2020)
- Onward Fresno! (2010)
- Surfside Carnival March (2020)
- Winter Suite (2015)