Raqad II : for two marimbas
by Paul Stanhope (2018)
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Raqad is an ancient Hebrew word which has the connotation of both leaping and dancing. Both of these elements are present in this piece for two marimbas where there is a frequent usage of wide intervallic leaps as well as quirky dance rhythms which often dissolve and transform.
This duo is an extension of material from a marimba solo written especially for the skills of percussion virtuoso Claire Edwardes; its origins came out of discussions between Claire and I at the 2016 AFCM festival when I was composer in residence and where we tried out a few ideas in between rehearsals. A few months later I completed the piece and, thanks to Claire's input, took the opportunity to explore some of the colouristic possibilities including deadstrokes, mallet clicking and playing the sides of marimba keys with the shafts of mallets. In this duo version, completed in 2018, I've taken the chance to enrich the harmonic material a little more and also spread out the playing demands between two players.
Instrumentation: 2 Marimbas (one should have a low E).
Duration: 5 min.
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