by Tyler Nechamkin
Instrumentation: 2–3 marimbas*—(1) 4-octave, (1) low E, (1) low C
* If three marimbas aren’t available, this piece can be performed on two instruments with M2+M4 sharing a 5-octave (low C) instrument.
Tyler Nechamkin's stirring marimba quartet, A Work of Fiction, is meant to represent a "choose-your-own audible adventure" rather than any specific fictional creation. The drama within the piece is created through the use of several compositional devices that are simple but effective. For instance, scattered throughout the piece (between players and within their respective parts) are the dissonant intervals of an augmented fifth and a major seventh. These intervals provide an angsty harmonic backdrop for another compositional device, imitation. Throughout the work, the individual parts echo one another, in some cases precisely imitated and in other cases slightly modified. This use of imitation suggests a deep, meaningful conversation between characters in a novel, where sometimes they agree and sometimes they disagree.
A Work of Fiction comes with a full, bound score and includes a CD-ROM containing an audio recording and all individual parts available for printing.