Composer: Edmund Jolliffe
Instrument: Percussion Ensemble
'The Game' was commissioned by Odense Percussion. The parts are set at different standards, rising gradually in difficulty from Player 1 - 6. The basket ball bounce may be taken by a separate player or, if taken by Player 1, they should ignore the maracas after bar 89. At this point the player should come to the centre of the stage. Depending on performance venue/circumstances, for added drama the basket ball may be thrown in the last bar - perhaps caught by someone in the audience, or if performed in a sports hall, aimed at a hoop.
This piece uses a lot of repetition. A phrase we hear a lot is 'practice makes perfect' and musicians often have to repeat phrases a lot to hone a particular skill. The same is true in sport. Everyone has to practise on their own but a piece/game only works when players work together.
'The Game' is meant to be enjoyable and fun. It never gets too serious. Even its climactic moments are fake climaxes really - based on diminished seventh chords. After all, it's only a game.
Marimba (5 Octave)
Whistle (on string around neck)
Basket Ball (may also be taken by a separate player)
About the composer +
Edmund’s music embraces a huge range of styles from contemporary classical to songs for shows. He writes music for film and television and is also an award winning concert composer. His music is published, performed and broadcast all over the world.
Recent commissions include pieces for The London Festival of Contemporary Church Music (broadcast on Radio 3), Oxford University Press Collections and The London Gay Men’s Chorus. In 2019 he won first prize at the 40th Ithaca College Choral Composition Competition and the Freudig Singers Choral Composition Competition. His music is published by OUP, Stainer & Bell, ABRSM, Banks Music, Tetractys, Spartan Press and Recital Music.
Edmund has been writing music to picture for twenty years. Major series he has composed music for include ‘Who do you think you are?’ (BBC1), ‘The Great War: The People’s Story’ (ITV1), ‘Homestead Rescue’ (Discovery) ‘Crazy Delicious’ (C4/Netflix) ‘Long Lost Family’ (ITV1) and ‘Unreported World’ (C4). He was nominated for an RTS Craft and Design Award for his score for the BBC film ‘Elizabeth at 90’.
Edmund studied music at Oxford University and completed a Masters in Film Composition at the Royal College of Music under Joseph Horovitz and Academy Award winner Dario Marianelli. He also studied on the Advanced Composition Course at Dartington International Summer School (supported by the Ralph Vaughan Williams Trust) and has attended composer residencies at the Banff Centre, Canada (Gladys and Merrill Muttart foundation scholarship for artistic residency) and the Helene Wurlitzer Foundation, New Mexico. He is a fellow of the ISM and full member of the PRS and MCPS.
Currently he teaches composition at the Royal Academy of Music (Junior Department) and is a Lecturer in Composing for the Moving Image at City University.
More information about him can be found at: www.edmundjolliffe.com
Review (Percussive Notes, June 2022)
The Game” is a percussion ensemble piece in which each part is more difficult than the other. This means that Part 1 is playable for almost any percussionist, including beginners, and Parts 4 and 5 are much more difficult and use four mallets. Given the unique structure of the parts, this is perfect for a situation where you would want to blend ability levels; think high school/college age playing with middle school and even elementary aged students.
The composer writes, “This piece uses a lot of repetition. A phrase we hear a lot is ‘practice makes perfect,’ and musicians often have to repeat phrases a lot to hone a particular skill. The same is true in sport. Everyone has to practice on their own, but a piece/game only works when players work together.” This is also a good opportunity to teach the process of practice and repetition.
In addition to the orchestration of levels being something entirely unique, it is simply a delightful piece, and I highly recommend it for situations that demand players of varying skill levels.
Front Cover graphics and layout: Ronni Kot Wenzell
Printed in Copenhagen, Denmark
Copyright © Edition SVITZER
With support from Koda’s Cultural Funds