Become Motion

five etudes for solo flute

Jack Van Zandt

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five etudes for solo flute

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Composer Jack Van Zandt
Year of Composition 2015
Duration ca.21'

Categories (all composers) ,
Catalogue ID ce-jvz1bm1


I. Bird; II: Taking a Line for a Walk; III. Chaconne; IV: Togaku; V. Train

Become Motion takes its title and concept from Swiss artist Paul Klee’s (1879-1940) pedagogical and art theory writings (Pedagogical Sketchbook, The Nature of Nature, and The Thinking Eye). Klee’s work and teachings are full of ways to initiate movement and drama in painting and drawing, and ideas for following through the implied processes to create pictures that appear to be in motion, despite their static nature. His titles for paintings and pedagogical examples often reflected these concepts: Twittering Bird, Taking a Line for a Walk, etc.

These etudes are inspired by Klee’s ideas, translating the concept of setting something in motion and working through the implications of that initiation into musical terms. Each of these five pieces explores different ways that music is put into motion conceptually. Each one uses different materials for musical expression. For instance, every piece uses a unique set of pitches arranged in a scale with a different numbers of tones: 7, 8, 12, 5 and 6. All of the pieces employ various idiosyncratic performing techniques as one would expect from a set of etudes. In addition, each etude explores different methods of composition, including improvisatory.

Become Motion is challenging, exciting and fun for performers and audiences alike. Players are free to perform all or any of the pieces in recital, and there are suggestions for employing optional live electronic effects for any adventurous flutists who would like to try them.

A version of this work for solo clarinet is also available here.