The bricoleur : for solo guitar
by Michael Knopf (2009)
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This work exemplifies my primary compositional workings, those of an improvisational approach to composition and the blending of genre and style in new work. The title refers to the practice of constructing something with whatever comes to hand - the art of bricolage. For the composer this can be from external associations through imitation and dabbling with ideas and musical worlds. It can also and most often be from the composer's own internal world which is steeped in a profusion of musical and cultural experiences as to be impossible to adequately catalogue. I refer to this latter as the bricolage of the innate.
This music has a spontaeous feeling and presents spatterings of musical ideas which operate as stylistic elements or genre signals. It begins with a minimalist figure ('a la Glass) which underpins the entire composition and which somehow acts as a medium through which classical guitar, flamenco, heavy metal, rock & blues, and bluegrass ideas present themselves. All of these musical forms are from a long association and interest (of varying degrees) in these musics. They become part of my compositional palette as if one would paint a piece of music using collage and mixed media to place objects of representation and approximation within a work.
What must distinguish this work from an improvisation though is structure. This is communciated through the return of the theme and its altered introduction. It is also imposed through internal referencing of ideas and stylistic elements which, within a whirlwind of activity, allows a sense of relatedness and unity to be perceived.
Duration: 6 min.
First performance: 26 Mar 09. Ian Hanger Recital Hall, Queensland Conservatorium of Music, Brisbane
Performances of this work
26 Mar 09: Ian Hanger Recital Hall, Queensland Conservatorium of Music, Brisbane
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