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Bird of Prey

Composer: Daniel Berg

Instrument: Piccolo and Marimba

Level: Advanced

Published: 2022

Price: €20.00

Item details

  • Description +
    • Preface

      During the years, I had the opportunity to work together with many excellent flute players and I really think the combination of Flute and Percussion is a perfect match. A lot of great composers have written for the instruments and through them, I got the inspiration to compose for flute and percussion.

      After composing Dark Shadows, Kinkaku-ji and Second Concerto for Flute & Percussion, all published by Edition Svitzer, I’ve got a question and wish from many flute players to also write something for piccolo and percussion. They are right, there are not so many pieces composed for that combination of instruments.

      Working close to the young virtuous performers, Laura Michelin & Filip Korošec, I had the opportunity to write them Bird of Prey. In the pulsing rhythms, we hear the bird hunting its prey and the harmonies enhance the wildlife, to always be on its guard. In the middle of the piece, the listener is getting a high-flying journey to the lamenting song of a Bird of Prey.

  • Instrumentation +
    • Piccolo and Marimba

  • Watch+
    • Performed by Laura Michelin, piccolo & Filip Korošec, marimba

  • About the composer +
    • Daniel Berg is a Swedish composer, musician and professor in classical percussion. He combines the role of writing music with being a versatile musician and teaches solo percussion and chamber music at the University College of Music in Gothenburg, Stockholm and Örebro in Sweden. 

      In his passion to promote the marimba as a solo- and chamber music instrument, Daniel has worked intimately with a number of composers who have written original music for the instrument. This includes more than 250 world premieres for solo and chamber works. Daniel Berg is an artist of Bergerault Marimbas and Elite Mallets. 

      As a composer Daniel has written a lot for percussion published by Edition Svitzer like his Kroumata for percussion sextet, Images for Percussion Duo and Yán Jiāng (Magma) for solo marimba - a commission from the Taiwan World Percussion Competition 2020.

  • Reviews +
    • Percussive Notes, April 2023

      Piccolo and percussion are not a combination you see every day, and I wasn’t sure what to expect. However, Daniel Berg’s command of harmony and texture is captivating. Berg has created an interesting chamber work for percussion that is accessible for the audience while technically and musically challenging for the performers.

      In just under three minutes, and after a flurry of notes, Berg has crafted a frenetic texture reminiscent of the power, majesty, and elegance associated with the raptor. Throughout “Bird of Prey,” the range of each instrument is manipulated to allow its distinct characteristics to shine through, all while the performers maneuver frequent meter changes and a sea of notes. An aura of danger and alertness is exuded from carnivorous birds, a trait the performers emulate as they suddenly align out of an abyss of scalar passages and are asked to stop deftly before falling into cavernous rests, a pitfall to be aware of during the learning process.

      Despite my initial uncertainty about this chamber pairing, Berg has managed to capture the haunting folk quality of the piccolo, perfectly suited for the more mellow marimba. Additionally, Berg smartly orchestrates for the low-A marimba, often featuring it using idiomatic permutations and rapid scalar passages in the mid to lower register, making this piece not only musically gratifying but also accessible for many players without access to a low-C instrument.

      “Bird of Prey” comes with a score and parts. It should be noted that while the parts are beautifully engraved, they are not laid out for performance and would require memorization, digitizing, or copies for performance. This intriguing piece would make a great addition to any graduate or professional recital and provides a great opportunity for collaboration amongst colleagues. I highly recommend “Bird of Prey” and am pleasantly surprised by Berg’s ingenuity!

      —Quintin Mallette

  • Credits +
    • Enamel painting: Bengt Berglund
      Front Cover: Ronni Kot Wenzell
      Photo: Jon Liinason Photo (Bengt Berglund and Daniel Berg): Pernilla Berg
      Printed in Copenhagen, Denmark
      Copyright © Edition SVITZER