The Erry Jig [download sample]
The Erry Jig is best described as a contemporary Irish jig - its not traditional or folk fiddling. Its classical. In memory of my greatgrandparents home in Erry Co. Tipperary and their time attending the local Crossroads Dances which always took place on a Sunday, after Church as everyone would meet at the crossroads on their way home! The Erry Jig focuses on sharing the melody around the sections of the orchestra to let people see that they all have a job, as well as introducing interesting and evolving rhythms to allow the orchestra an opportunity to work on unison playing and new rhymic meters. -->
A Spring Morning [download sample]
A Spring Morning is a lush composition, rich in Irish melody. The strong, drawn out melody pulls the players along together and actually manages to warm up in texture if the players are not tight in unison playing. This unusual side effect gives the players a sense of enjoyment beyond their skill level as they are actively involved in creating a glorious texture that ignores their skill level. There is a strong second melody line that grows out of the primary melody almost like a primal call and answer. I have to say, I really enjoy watching the kids 'enjoy' performing this piece. -->
Tranquility [download sample]
Tranquility rewards the players for their efforts in tight tutti performances while challenging their intonation more than before. The more the orchestra plays together, the more the piece starts to sing. Melodic sections are divided and passed from section to section here as well as soloistic sectional passages. Intonation is introduced here as an important factor weighing in on the sound of the performed piece. The better the intonation, the better the texture and interplay of instruments will sound throughout the performance.
Ryans Cry [download sample]
Ryans Cry reflects on a deep inner cry that comes through us all from time to time. That cry generates an unwavering primal will to live or persevere that we reach for in moments of deep spiritual or physical distress. The arrangement concentrates of the contrapuntal nature of various interacting melodic patterns. The piece opens with a long and heartfelt tone from the flute, however the violins soon enter and join the flute with a haunting romantic melody. The central episode is more dramatic in mood, before a forceful melodic rendition in the cellos re-introduces the main theme above evolving counterpoint within the second violin and viola parts. Finally, the cry fades.