Percussion Quartet
Duration: Three movements (8 min, 5 min, and 5 min)
See below

You will be e-mailed an attachment with scores and parts within 24 hours of your purchase.

$40.00 – TRANCES I

$30.00 – TRANCES II

$30.00 – TRANCES III

TRANCES I Instrument Needs
– Four mixing bowls large enough to cover smartphones. Kitchen Aid mixing bowls recommended.
– Four smartphones to play provided white screen drone.
– Four flat pieces of cardboard to be placed underneath bowl to produce a low frequency sound.

TRANCES II Instrument Needs
– Two vibraphones
– One glockenspiel
– Four smartphones to play provided white screen drone.

TRANCES III Instrument Needs
– One set of diatonic deskbells (C to C)


TRANCES is a percussion quartet written in three movements. The piece was commissioned by the Green Vibes Project through a consortium of 27 musicians from around the world. TRANCES explores different mediums that induce trance-like states in humans, like flashing lights, smart phone addiction, and hypnotic religious practices.

TRANCE I is written for mixing bowls and smartphones. Played with dim concert lighting, the goal is to use the bowls to cover and uncover the bright screens of each phone, producing various visual lighting patterns from player to player. The performers create rhythmic interplay by striking the bowls with sticks as they are raised and lowered. The smartphones also produce a pre-composed audio drone, which is manipulated via the movement of the bowls, creating hypnotic, wah-wah pedal type effects.

TRANCE II is a theatre piece / musical composition scored for two vibraphones, glockenspiel, and smartphones. This movement is a commentary on how smartphones have normalized us to be detached from every part of our lives, while we eat, sleep, and communicate with others. I wanted to place the musicians in the simultaneous roles of performers and phone users to help the audience reflect on how normal (or abnormal) smartphone use has become, and how this relates to our everyday activities and interactions.

TRANCE III is notated for deskbells and singing. Having grown up the grandson of a Pentecostal pastor, I’ve seen first hand the role religion can play in hypnosis. i’ve witnessed people overcome with emotion while they worship, and have also witnessed parishioners participating in the ritual practice of speaking in tongues. Having stepped away from these religious experiences, I still have vivid memories of them from my childhood. For this movement, I’ve taken fragmented lyrics from an old Spanish hymn I used to sing to create repetitive, chant-like figures for the performers to sing. These lyrics translate to “Fill me oh Lord with your spirit, and let me feel the fire of your love in my heart.” This singing is combined with intricate rhythmic interplay on deskbells, which are manipulated to produce muffled and ringing metal sounds. In biblical passages, speaking in tongues is compared to the ringing of metals when done incorrectly. Combining voice and metals was a deliberate decision and reflects my own fond yet complicated relationship with my past religious experiences.