Marimba Quartet (Briggs)

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Matthew Briggs

General Info

Year: 2001
Duration: c. 17:00
Difficulty: Level V (see Ratings for explanation)
Publisher: Honeyrock
Cost: Score and Parts - $59.95


I. Allegro
II. Adagio
III. Scherzo Rhythmicus
IV. Finale


Player I: Marimba 4.0
Player II: Marimba 4.3
Player III: Marimba 4.6
Player IV: Marimba 5.0

Program Notes

(third prize winner 2000 Percussive Arts Society composition contest)

2000 PAS Composition Contest, Marimba Quartet is a virtuosic, 17 minute piece written in the four-movement structure of a classical string quartet. The first movement is highly neo-classical, in sonata-allegro form. The second utilizes a cyclic, self-transposing, jazzy harmonic progression in one voice as a foundation for floating melodic ideas in the other three parts. The third, "Scherzo Rhythmicus," is a tour de force in 20 eighth-note time, leading to a surprising 3/8 conclusion. The final movement is an all-out chromatic race (a la Dimitri Shostakovich) to the climatic final triad! (4, 4.3, 4.6 and 5 octave instruments required) college/professional.[1]


This marimba quartet--which was the third-place winner in the 2000 PAS Composition Contest--is reminiscent in style and character of the Classical-era string quartet. The work is divided into four movements- "Allegro," "Adagio," "Scherzo Rhythmicus" and "Finale--and lasts approximately 17 minutes. A four-octave marimba, a low-A marimba, a low-E marimba and a five-octave marimba are needed to perform the work. All four marimbists utilize four-mallet technique in the first movement. In the second movement, players 1 and 2 utilize two-mallet technique, and players 3 and 4 utilize four-mallet technique. All marimbists employ two-mallet technique in the third and fourth movements. The third movement, "Scherzo Rhythmicus," is compositionally fresh and inventive. All four players use stick clicks, stick tremolos, and foot taps within this movement to heighten the frenzy of the scherzo. - Lisa Rogers, April 2002[2]



Commercial Discography

Online Recordings

Recent Performances

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Works for Percussion by this Composer

Freight Train - Percussion Nonet
Krzeminski's Star - Multiple Percussion; Violin; Electronics
Marimba Quartet (Briggs) - Marimba Quartet
Simon Says - Marimba

Additional Resources