Cuando Desperto

Cuando despertó el dinosauro todavía estaba allí — (text by: Augusto Monterroso)

Cuando despertó
Live Recording, June 2010.
composed for soprano, flute, harp, percussion, contra bass.

This short piece was written in the early summer of 2010. It was featured as a companion piece to some of George Crumb’s vocal works. The Spanish text is written by an El Salvadorian writer, Augusto Monterroso. This text came to my attention while reading Italo Calvino, who described it as one of the shortest, yet most complete, stories ever told.

The piece was more theatrical than it sounds and quite a literal interpretation of the poetry. The percussionist is blindfolded for the performance and is instructed to learn their part independently. The ensemble cues the percussionist at certain points, by tapping on their shoulders, and other physical cues that inform the percussionist where they are in the music. Minimal rehearsals between the percussionist and the rest of the ensemble are encouraged, in order to give the piece a precarious sense of spontaneity.

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thank you kindly to the performers in this recording:

Elisenda Pujals – soprano
Emeline Desi – flute
Milana Zaric – harp
Mei-Yi Lee – percussion
Ilya Ziblat Shay – bass

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