Magic 8-Ball (2017)

The Magic 8-Ball was something that always fascinated me as a child. I never thought of this entertaining toy in a deeper musical context. This work's main melodic structure comes from the contents within the ball itself. There are ten variants of 'yes', five variants of 'no', and five 'non-committal' answers to make up the icosahedron within.

 

Musically, I represent these as a ten-note motive, and two other five-note motives (one that is angular to represent 'no', and one that has barely any motion to represent 'non-committal'). Outside of this, the main bulk of the piece is reactionary to the answers given, whether it be an all-out panic or an ecstasy of the desired answer showing. All of this tension and release eventually leads to a meditation on an everlasting "search for an answer", which leads the work to a gentle, yet unresolved conclusion.

The chamber version of this work was premiered by Contemporaneous on January 25, 2018.