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Timpani Solos

Prelude #3

timpani solo with percussion

Composer: Christopher Deane
Publisher: Christopher Deane
Instrumentation: 4 Timpani, Gongkagui, Songba, Djun-Djun (or sub Cowbell, Small Tom-tom, Kick Drum respectively)

Program Notes:
Prelude No. 3 was written for John Feddersen, principal timpanist with the North Carolina Symphony, who premiered the work at the 1994 North Carolina Day of Percussion.  I am always interested in combining the varied musical interests of certain players.  John was and continues to be very interested in West African djembe.  I have honored those interests by integrating West African instruments into the instrumentation.  The piece also contains rhythmic ideas inspired by, but not derived from, West African drumming traditions.

“This timpani/multiple percussion solo incorporates West African rhythms in a very successful setting. Approximately eight minutes in length, the performer is required to navigate several coordination challenges between the timpani and accessory instruments. An illustration of the recommended setup is included.

The timpani sounds used include the normal beating spot, the center of the head, and dead strokes, all of which are clearly notated. Wood and soft sticks are required. While there are several tuning changes, all tunings are limited to the 26-inch drum. Musical passages alternate frequently between the timpani and West African instruments. Deane specifies that the performer should work to achieve an equal balance between all of these instruments throughout the piece.

As may be expected in a West African piece, the time signature is 12/8 throughout. However, the performer is required to subdivide the dotted quarter notes into duple and quadruple rhythms. The performer is presented with three short solo sections where improvisation is required.

The piece begins with a pseudo bell pattern in the opening, moves to solo sections for timpani, the improvisation sections, and finally returns to the opening material. This is a well-written composition with a great deal of interest for the performer as well as any audience. Students with drumset background will have an easier time navigating the required coordination.” — Mike Sekelsky Percussive Notes, July 2013

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Christopher Deane

Associate Professor of Percussion
University of North Texas

Christopher Deane is an Associate Professor of Percussion at the University of North Texas College of Music teaching orchestral timpani, mallets, and directing the UNT Percussion Players percussion ensemble. He holds performance degrees from the University of North Carolina School of the Arts and the Cincinnati College-Conservatory of Music. He studied with James Massie Johnson, former principal timpanist of the St. Louis Symphony and percussion with Allen Otte. He has also studied independently with Roland Kohloff, N.Y. Philharmonic, Eugene Espino, Cincinnati Symphony and Leonard Schulman, N.Y. City Opera.

Deane is currently principal percussionist with the Las Colinas Symphony Orchestra and is acting Principal Timpanist of the East Texas Symphony Orchestra. He is a frequent performer with the Dallas Wind Symphony and has appeared on five recordings with that ensemble. Deane was the Principal Timpanist of the Greensboro Symphony for nine years and performed with the North Carolina Symphony for ten years. Deane has performed with numerous large ensembles including the Boston Pops, Cincinnati Symphony, Dallas Symphony, Detroit Symphony, Ft. Worth Symphony, Minnesota Orchestra, Spoleto Festival Orchestra, Utah Symphony and Virginia Symphony working with conductors such as Leonard Slatkin, Loren Maazel, Andrew Litton, Jaap van Sweden, Jesus Lopez-Cobos, Gennady Rozhdestvensky, and Keith Lockhart. His chamber music experience includes performances with the Percussion Group Cincinnati, Aeolian Chamber Players, Mallarme Chamber Players and the Philidor Percussion Group. He has appeared in more than seventy performances as a concerto soloist with either symphony orchestras or wind ensembles.

Deane was the faculty percussionist for the Bowdoin Summer Music Festival in Maine from 1982 to 1989. Over the course of those eight years Deane worked closely with composer George Crumb performing his music and serving as a consultant to Crumb for works including Idyll for the Misbegotten, Quest, and Haunted Landscapes. Deane served as a percussionist for the American Dance Festival from 1992 to 1996. He has also served as faculty percussionist for the Vale Veneto Music Festival in Brazil.

Deane has recorded as a timpanist, percussionist and Hungarian Cimbalom soloist. He is a featured concerto soloist on two UNT Wind Symphony recordings featuring the concertos of Joseph Schwantner, Russell Peck and William Kraft under the baton of Eugene Corporon. Deane has also recorded the music of Stravinsky with conductor Robert Craft for the Naxos Label, and has recorded with the Detroit Symphony, North Carolina Symphony, Greensboro Symphony, Cincinnati Philharmonia, Mallarme Chamber Players, St. Stevens Chamber Orchestra and the Winston-Salem Symphony.

Deane has won both 1st and 2nd prize in the PAS Composition Competition. He studied Composition with Sherwood Shaffer, Robert Ward, and Charles Fussell, and independently with Ben Johnston. He has received numerous commissions including the Percussive Arts Society, University of Oklahoma, and the University of Kentucky. His music has been performed and recorded internationally and a number of his compositions have become standard literature on concerts and recitals worldwide. Deane has served two terms on the PAS Board of Directors. He is a clinician for the Bergerault/Dynasty Corporation, Black Swamp Percussion, Innovative Percussion and Sabian Cymbals.

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Christopher Deane Christopher Deane
University of North Texas
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