Medium Concert Percussion
by Brian Slawson
Instrumentation: Glockenspiel, Xylophone, Vibraphone, Marimba—low A
Upbeat Suite is an arrangement for percussion quartet of three orchestral excerpts, by three different composers, that share common rhythmic elements of upbeat, or 2-beat, feels: “Dance of the Little Swans” by Tchaikovsky; “Ballet of the Unhatched Chicks” by Mussorgsky; and, from Carmen, “Danse Boheme” by Bizet. Their cheerful nature dictates a light, bouncy style and is enhanced by the use of grace notes and appoggiaturas. A frequent arranger of classical themes, Slawson is adept at capturing the character of the original while still writing idiomatically, and in this case accessibly, for small mallet quartet. This is a rare marriage that will have you thinking Suite thoughts of your developing ensemble.
Upbeat Suite comes as a full, bound score and includes a CD-ROM containing individual parts and a recording.