Compound Autonomy

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Jim Casella

General Info

Year: 2010
Duration: c. 5:53
Difficulty: (see Ratings for explanation)
Publisher: Tapspace
Cost: Score and Parts - $50.00   |   Score Only - $0.00


Player 1: Glockenspiel & Guiro
Player 2: Xylophone & Crotales
Player 3: Chimes & 2 Cowbells & Guiro & Cricket
Player 4: Vibraphone & Suspended Cymbal
Player 5: Vibraphone
Player 6: Marimba
Player 7: Marimba
Player 8: Marimba
Player 9: Marimba
Player 10: Timpani
Player 11: Bongos & Vibraslap & Wind Gong
Player 12: Sandpaper Block & 2 Woodblock
Player 13: Triangle & Mark Tree
Player 14: Sizzle Cymbal & Suspended Cymbal & 2 China Cymbals & Splash cymbal & Mark Tree & 5 Log Drum
Player 15: Drum set
Player 16: Piano
Player 17: Bass Guitar

Program Notes

Written for 15 percussionists, piano, and bass guitar, Compound Autonomy is a complex work which aims to integrate a variety of autonomous lines into a unified fabric. As layers of polyrhythmic motives combine, the piece becomes more complicated, but still aims to maintain a genuine groove.

The subtitle of the piece is basically a simple description of its primary components. The main ostinato is an ongoing 4-3 pattern of a minor third interval (C, and E-flat), translating as the syllables "Do" and "Me" in solfége. Sibe is the Swiss German word for "seven," the meter of the piece. This is simply a tip of the hat to one of my favorite musicians, Zurich composer and pianist, Nik Bärtsch, whose music inspired this piece.[1]

Performance Notes

Mallet Sticking Suggestions: In some parts, stickings have been suggested. Players are welcome, however, to use whichever stickings feel most comfortable.
Timpani Tuning: There are a number of ways that timpani tuning can be accomplished, so specific pedal markings have been left out. Whenever possible, its is recommended that stepwise melodic parts be pedaled on one drum. This may mean that three pitches three pitches of a 4-note figure would be performed on one drum, with the fourth pitch being played on a different drum.
Vibraphones: Pedal markings are not indicated in great detail, and much of this should be left to the discretion of the performer as they interpret the natural phrasing of each part.
Marimbas: While there are only two marimba staves in the score, these parts are ideally intended to be doubled by two players each on their own instrument which will help these parts balance with the rest of the ensemble.
Drum set: While there are several repeat bars used, this part is generally written out with pretty specific detail. While it may be tempting to break away from what's written, it's pretty important for the drum set player to perform the written part.
Cowbell / Brake Drum / Bongo / Woodblock: These four players should be Very focused on playing uniformly and balanced with each others, so communication and listening is important.


Commercial Discography

Recent Performances

Works for Percussion by this Composer

Altered Gates - Percussion Quintet
Compound Autonomy - Percussion Ensemble (15)
Cop Drama - Percussion Ensemble (16)
Cyclone - Percussion Ensemble (12)
Dystopia - Percussion Ensemble (15)
Joaquin on Sunshine - Percussion Ensemble (15-17)
Katraterra - Percussion Nonet
Meanwhile in a Parallel Universe - Marimba, Percussion Nonet
Prime Ordinals - Multiple Percussion, Djembe
Stormbreak - Percussion Ensemble, Wind Ensemble (optional)
Technology (Casella) - Percussion Ensemble
Truth or Consequence - Percussion Ensemble (19)
Windows of the Maloca - Percussion Ensemble(14)

Additional Resources