Rapid Eye Movement for Wind Ensemble (2003)
Rapid Eye Movement is study in development of a single melodic and rhythmic motive within the structure of a three-section concert overture. The melodic material for the work outlines a progression of perfect fifths, resulting in the root, fifth, and ninth scale degrees of a major scale. Derived recurring harmonies include stacked major triads—the roots of which are a ninth apart—and major triads with an added ninth. The rhythmic impetus is a dotted-note figure that appears early in the work, the syncopation from which becomes a rhythmic ostinato begun by the triangle solo at the outset of the “Vivo” section.
The work loosely depicts what might be experienced in an active dream state: a period of inactivity prior to the deepest sleep (“rapid eye movement”), during which dreams become active, constantly changing. . . sometimes taking the sleeper to impossible physical feats along with emotional highs and lows. Sometimes, the sleeper is relieved to be awakened finding “it was only a dream” while other times, the dream inspires the person to strive for higher aspirations in his/her daily life.
The work is written for and dedicated to Dan Stowell, director, and his Logan [Utah] High School Wind Band. . . . for their efforts and success in teaching and learning the critical thinking involved in lifelong music-making.