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Strange Loops

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BJ Brooks

BJ Brooks

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General Info

Year: 2022
Duration: c. 8:05
Difficulty: (see Ratings for explanation)
Publisher: Unknown
Cost: Score and Parts - Unknown


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None discovered thus far.

Program Notes

On the morning of Friday, August 21, 2020, I had a dream where I was at a concert, and I was listening to an ensemble where a soloist performed a single, two-phrase melody...

I find the idea of dreaming about music fascinating, since it is often not too clear from where the music comes. I thought about this frequently, with deep introspection, when I read Douglas Hofstadter's I Am a Strange Loop. In that book Hofstadter wrote on the matters of human consciousness, self-perception, Godel's incompleteness theorem, artificial intelligence, metaphor, and the sense of "I". Hofstadter postulates that our sense of self, our "I", is the result of a recursive type of feedback loop of our mind's creation, that this "strange loop" is the core of cognition, and that each human "I" is distributed over numerous minds, not just limited to one. Though one's own self is the primary source, there are other versions that branch through the people with whom we have interacted. This is how whatever makes us can outlive us, to some extent, through others. Music is analogous to this. What a composer writes is often a synthesis of thoughts and emotions that are planted in some way or another by our interaction with what surrounds us and manifested consciously and subconsciously (or, I suppose, in a dream, unconsciously!) throughout their writing. '

Strange Loops leans heavily on the musical loops of others. The specific music integrated throughout the work is taken from the musical selections referenced in Hofstadter's book. Strange Loops' central tenet is that strange loops exist and they commingle in the formation of new loops. In this music, that idea is represented by musical quotations from Stravinsky's Firebird, Chopin's Winter Wind, Bach's All Are Mortal as well as his Fugue in G Major, and that melody from my August 21st dream which are all layered on the precise formal structure, down to the measure, of Prokofiev's Violin Concerto I, op. 19, mvt. r. Everything contained in Strange Loops is some type of quotation of that music. I would hope you would contemplate on that as you listen to Strange Loops, a piece written about from where dreams come.

- Program Note by composer


None discovered thus far.

State Ratings

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Works for Winds by This Composer