Doppler Patrol, opus 111 (2020)
Doppler Patrol is an orchestral work incorporating within its instrumentation the Vietnamese instrument the đàn tranh, plus the acoustic guitar and didgeridoo. The title of the work relates to its commission as a movement in the 2021 Vietnam Requiem. This particular movement tries to capture the anxiety and occasional elation in the experience of being on patrol in a forbidding dense jungle environment where threats and unfamiliarity contribute to a heightened sense of fear and awareness. The piece ends with an extended lament for đàn tranh accompanied by the didgeridoo.
The ‘Doppler’ reference in the title refers to the falling semitone pattern heard throughout the work – suggesting the Doppler effect experience of a sound in motion dropping in pitch when moving closer and then further away. The work was commissioned by Flowers of War and the Australian War Memorial, Canberra, for the Patrolling movement of the Vietnam Requiem.
© Andrew Schultz, 2020.