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Virginia Tate (by Paul Smadbeck)

Price: $15.00

Product Information

This new piece, with its gorgeous harmonies and tonal language, is truly a beautiful addition to solo marimba literature. While technically accessible to the intermediate player, advanced players can also enjoy the musical possibilities this piece offers. A 4.6 marimba is required. Can be heard on She-e Wu's recently released CD.

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Musical FeaturesIn the summer of 1995 I received a call from Dr. J.C. Combs, professor of percussion at Wichita State University, inviting me to come out and perform as a guest artist with the WSU Percussion Ensemble. I was delighted for the opportunity to play marimba in public once again, and in preparing for this visit I was inspired to return to composing after a long hiatus. The result was an early version of a one movement work for solo marimba which I subsequently completed and named in memory of my wife Lois' mother, Virginia Tate, who passed away tragically in 1986 at the age of 52.

In all of my compositions for marimba, I tend to utilize an arpeggiated style of playing which brings out both the percussive strength of the instrument as well as its legato capabilities and richness of tone. Virginia Tate is consistent with these compostional goals.

Musically, I wanted to initially create for the listener a mood of quitet reflection. The form is a fairly simple AABC Coda, prefaced by an introduction in c-sharp. The primary melodic theme, also in c-sharp, is stated twice and leads to a rather forceful section in f-sharp which develops fragments of earlier material. This is followed by a contrasting dolce in G, which builds in intensity and leads to a coda. Here, the listener is teased into an expectation of a return to the primary melodic theme when, instead, the material from the introduction is used in a downward cascade of chords, ending in a quiet echo of the opening theme.

Paul Smadbeck

September, 2005

Technical Features
Level SuggestionKPP