Program notes

Spherics for sextet, opus 21 (1985)

This ten minute sextet is scored for flute/piccolo, tenor trombone, cello, percussion, piano, and chamber or electric organ and was composed for Flederman ensemble with commission funding from the Music Board of the Australia Council. Flederman premiered Spherics at the Sydney Opera House in May 1985. Subsequently, an alternate version with bass clarinet replacing tenor trombone was written for Terra Australis ensemble’s tour of the United States in 1988; either version is available for use.

The word Spherics refers to the small sounds – cracks, whistles, whispers, tiny whoops – that are audible in space, as shown by recordings made by American composer Alvin Lucier using low frequency antennae. In this work the sounds are explored through instrumental and vocal sounds in fast-paced, metrically driven music.

© Andrew Schultz, 1988.