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My interest in the vast variety of musical languages and cultures has lead me to the creation of a piece that would explore those cultures while trying to avoid ethnocentrism or colonialist overtones. Taking advantage of the Wesleyan’s world music program with its diverse group of musicians, I searched among my colleagues for performers experienced in non-western instrumental or vocal techniques. I ended up with an ensemble consisting of: an overtone singer (fluent in Mongolian Khoomei style of singing), Chapareke (an instrument of indigenous Mexican Indians), Pipa (Chinese lute), Marimba, Bass Steel Pans (from Trinidad) and Gamelan (from Indonesia). The choice of this unusual mixture of instruments was based on the availability of experienced performers (in the case of the overtone singer, Chapareke player and Pipa player), and purely coloristic values (in the case of Marimba, Steel Pans and Gamelan).

Instrumentation: Khoomei throat singing, chapareke Raramuri, pipa, marimba (5 oct.), bass Steal pans, gamelan (gong ageng, gong suwukan, gender)


Duration: 11’


Difficulty: Intermediate


2016, Middletown, CT

Village of Control

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Tomasz Arnold

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