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Symphony: Savage Howls

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Armando Bayolo

Armando Bayolo


General Info

Year: 2011
Duration: c. 31:00
Difficulty: V (see Ratings for explanation)
Publisher: Olibel Music
Cost: Score and Parts – Unknown


Movements

1. Shriekfanfare — 9:35
2. Mists — 13:05
3. ...that remedy all singers dream of... — 8:30


Instrumentation

Full Score
C Piccolo
Flute I-II-III-IV-V
Oboe I-II
English Horn I-II (II doubles Oboe III)
Bassoon I-II
Contrabassoon
B-flat Soprano Clarinet I-II-III-IV-V
B-flat Bass Clarinet
B-flat Contrabass Clarinet
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
Tuba
String Bass
Piano
Harp
Timpani
Percussion (5 players), including:

  • Bass Drum
  • Bongos
  • Brake Drum
  • Chimes
  • Congas (2)
  • Crash Cymbals
  • Crotales
  • Field Drum
  • Glockenspiel
  • Gongs (2)
  • Kick Drum
  • Log Drums (2)
  • Marimba
  • Sizzle Cymbal
  • Snare Drum
  • Suspended Cymbal
  • Tambourine
  • Tam-tam
  • Tom-toms (4)
  • Vibraphone
  • Wind Chimes (ceramic)
  • Xylophone


Errata

None discovered thus far.


Program Notes

Symphony: Savage Howls is the third in a loose trilogy of symphonies scored for a variety of ensembles (the first, a “chamber” symphony, is scored for a large chamber ensemble of 18 instruments; the second is a more traditional work in four movements scored for orchestra) in which I try to engage the past while maintaining a firm footing in the present and, perhaps, even updating this venerable genre. Of these three symphonies it is also the most personal and the one which wears its heart most obviously on its sleeve.

The title comes from a line in Stéphane Mallarmé’s Tombeau de Charles Baudelaire and describes the symphony’s bitter, enraged, death-haunted mood. Shriekfanfare, the first movement’s title, is a bastardization of Richard Wagner’s description of the opening fanfare in Beethoven’s Ninth Symphony as a “shrekenfanfare,” or “fanfare of terror.” The entire first movement is an attempt to simultaneously distill and stretch this famous passage’s sense of horror and rage. The mood gradually relaxes over the course of the movement, but the calm is short-lived and the rage consuming.

Mists is a gentler meditation on loss and memory. It is marked with the last two lines of Mallarmé’s poem, which read, in Henry Weinfield’s translation, “…A tutelary poison, his own Wraith,/We breathe in always though it brings us death;” a reflection of memory of those lost, precious and fleeting in itself, and always reminding us of our own finality.

…that remedy all singers dream of…, the finale, is an attempt at a more physical representation of rage, loosely, through the tropes of heavy metal music (at least as I understand them). The poetry here is Allen Ginsberg’s, who, in his Kaddish, conjuring the Bible, the Buddhist Book of Answers and Ray Charles, writes that “Death is that remedy all singers dream of.” There is little singing, however, in this movement, as it is a rather obsessive exploration of a simple rhythmic figure which is only interrupted by a final “savage howl” which briefly gives way to a lyrical meditation on transience, memory and loss; “…nothing to weep for but the Beings in the Dream, trapped in its disappearance…”

Symphony: Savage Howls was commissioned by a consortium of wind ensembles led by the University of Oregon and its music director, Robert Ponto. It is dedicated to the memory of Steven Dennis Bodner, director of the wind ensemble and contemporary music ensemble at Williams College, who died suddenly at age 35 in January, 2011. His death deprived the world of an important advocate for new music and a talented young conductor whose voice was silenced before he could achieve his full potential.

- Program Note by composer


Media


State Ratings

None discovered thus far.


Performances

To submit a performance please join The Wind Repertory Project

  • Peabody Wind Ensemble (Baltimore, Md.) – 12 December 2014
  • Oregon State University (Corvallis) Wind Ensemble (Chris Chapman, conductor) – 3 March 2014
  • University of Oregon (Eugene) Wind Ensemble (Robert Ponto, conductor) – 12 February 2012 *Premiere Performance*


Works for Winds by This Composer


Resources