Splinters (2015)

This approximately 5 minute piece for oboe, cello, and live electronics derives its name from both the sharp, woodiness of the timbres it incorporates and also the shape of several prominent and reoccurring “hairpin” gestures. The material of the piece consists of accelerating hocketed instrumental textures backed by timbre clouds, solos for each of the oboe and cello, moments where electronic textures take the foreground, and a contrasting, sustained middle section that explores the upper ranges of the instruments with harmonic support from the electronics.

The melodic and harmonic material of this piece is derived from distortions (e.g. including both major and minor thirds of a chord) of several simple chord progressions. The instrumental writing explores a handful of extended techniques for each of the instruments, widening their palettes for solos and textures. Both the electronics and acoustic components were composed simultaneously, and all electronic material is derived directly (through live sampling) or indirectly (through abstractive processing) from recordings of oboe and cello.

My personal goal for this piece was to create a composition scored for instruments and live electronics that effectively incorporated the world of the electronics into the acoustic world of the instruments, and vice versa.