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STOMP (Corigliano)

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John Corigliano

John Corigliano (trans. Brooke Humfeld Johnson)


General Info

Year: 2010 / 2018
Duration: c. 6:20
Difficulty: VI (see Ratings for explanation)
Original Medium: Violin
Publisher: G. Schirmer
Cost: Score and Parts - Rental


Instrumentation

Full Score
C Piccolo
Flute I-II
Oboe I-II
Bassoon I-II
E-flat Soprano Clarinet
B-flat Soprano Clarinet I-II-III-IV
B-flat Bass Clarinet
B-flat Soprano Saxophone
E-flat Alto Saxophone I-II
B-flat Tenor Saxophone
E-flat Baritone Saxophone
B-flat Trumpet I-II-III
Horn in F I-II-III-IV
Trombone I-II-III
Bass Trombone
Euphonium
Tuba
String Bass
Timpani
Percussion I-II-III, including:

  • Bass Drum
  • Castanets
  • Marching Machine
  • Marimba I-II
  • Ratchet
  • Snare Drum
  • Splash Cymbal
  • Suspended Cymbal
  • Tambourine
  • Tom-toms (4)
  • Vibraphone
  • Wood Block
  • Xylophone

Players stomping


Errata

None discovered thus far.


Program Notes

STOMP began as a solo (unaccompanied) violin piece written for the semi-finalists of the Tchaikovsky Competition several years ago. In order to test the performers' ability to do new things, I included in this piece special difficulties that the standard repertoire they were playing did not pose.

For one thing, I changed the tuning of the violin so that the lowest open string (G) now sounded a third lower, on E: I also tuned the highest string (E) down a half-step, to E-flat. For the players, this meant they had to relearn where their fingers had to be placed to get their pitches. It enabled me to write a crunchy low E as the bass note of the violin, which alternated with the open two top strings sounding A and E-flat -- making possible some pungently dissonant intervals.

If this weren’t enough, I asked the players to tap or stomp on certain beats. This was because STOMP is actually “fiddle music” -- country music, bluegrass and jazz combined, and the original players of this music often stomp to the rhythm (and mis-tune their instruments).

In adapting STOMP for orchestra, I was beset with problems. How was I to take a mostly single line instrument like a violin and fill it out so a whole orchestra could play it?

Very often the melodies of the solo violin implied harmonies, and sometimes the violin played chords with its four strings. I took both ideas to beef up the texture of the piece, and did away with the changed tuning (after all, I had violas to play my low E now!). But I could not give up the tapping and stomping -- so you will hear sections of the orchestra, and finally the full orchestra stomping away. I hope they don’t drown out their playing -- but I will find that out when we play it.

The piece is only seven minutes long -- shorter than it takes to read this program note, so I will end by saying that this should be fun for everyone, and I hope it is.

- Program Note by composer for orchestral version


STOMP (2011/2017) was originally written for solo violin in 2011 and transcribed for wind band by Brooke Humfeld Johnson in 2017.

Corigliano says of his work:

What to include in a competition piece in 2011? One could write a virtuoso étude or a lyrical essay: but the judges will have dozens of pieces that demonstrate these virtues. I thought a more interesting piece would test a performer’s imagination, intelligence and musicality by offering interesting new problems to solve. Hence, this unaccompanied six-minute study I call STOMP written for the 2011 Tchaikovsky Competition in Russia.

STOMP poses its player three problems: of ear, style, and coördination. First, the violin’s outer two strings are tuned to non-standard pitches. This mis-tuning (scordatura) deepens the instrument’s range, and replaces the usual perfect fifths between strings with grating dissonances high and low. Second, the piece is modeled not on classical precedents, but on American fiddle music -- bluegrass and jazz. And third, as in fiddle playing, the violinist must periodically stomp with his or her foot along with the music.

So STOMP demands a theatrical mind, an unerring ear, and a delight in making music with the entire body. It is supposed to be fun for the audience, and a workout for the soloists. I can’t wait to hear them play it.

- Program Note from University of North Texas Wind Symphony concert program, 7 November 2019


Media

(Needed - please join the WRP if you can help.)


State Ratings

None discovered thus far.


Performances

To submit a performance please join The Wind Repertory Project

  • University of North Texas (Denton) Wind Symphony (Eugene Migliaro Corporon, conductor) – 7 November 2019
  • University of Kansas (Lawrence) Wind Ensemble (Paul Popiel, conductor) – 19 February 2018 *Wind Transcription Premiere Performance*


Works for Winds by This Composer


Resources