Particle Heuristics (2016) 4'
For four-hands marimba.
Commissioned by arx duo. Premiered at Field Concert Hall, 8/4/16. Self-published (Morningside Press, ASCAP).
I’m a little bit of a science nerd, and as such I’ve always been fascinated by the concept of quantum mechanics. The idea that our reality is based in some way on an unpredictable, unstable, and even unknowable randomness is mind-bogglingly interesting to me. When I sat down to write Particle Heuristics, the scintillating, syncopated textures I was imagining evoked in my mind the image of a set of erratically energetic subatomic particles. Over the course of this work, the vibrant and mercurial opening gestures transform into several different kinds of material, ultimately finding a harmonious synchronization they lacked at the outset. Hence the title Particle Heuristics: particle, for the almost quantum capriciousness of the surface of this music, and heuristics as a reference to the form of the work, in which motives recombine in only loosely prescribed ways. Ultimately, it is my hope that this material’s penchant for surprise makes its brief journey all the more exciting and satisfying.