Second Concerto for Flute and Percussion
Composer: Daniel Berg
Instrument: Flute and Percussion
In 1939 the American Lou Harrison composed his First Concerto – a classical and fantastic work for flute and two percussion players. Influenced by this piece, Daniel Berg now wants to continue in the same atmosphere with a second concerto. The first movement is very much inspired by the groove and swinging syncopated rhythms from the concerto by Lou Harrison.
In the four other movements Daniel Berg enters a world of different techniques for the flute like air tones, tongue pizzicato and Tongue Ram. Every moment is dedicated to a fantastic flute player Daniel worked with during the years – for example Björn J:son Lindh who was an excellent composer and a master in playing singing and percussive flute.
For the percussion part Daniel uses traditional instruments like drums and wood blocks, but also toy electric bell, marimba, vibraphone and a tuned bottle. The Concerto is written for two percussionists, however it’s possible to be played by one player (both parts in first movement and only the marimba in the last) – just like the First Concerto for Flute and Percussion by Lou Harrison.
Bottle tuned in Ab
Wood blocks (5)
Toy Electric Bell (1)
Junk/Splash/Opera Gong (1)
Thai Gong c1
Performed by Liv Fridén, flute & Andrea Radi and David Westerbrand, percussion
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.
Review (Percussive Notes, October 2021)Inspired by Lou Harrison’s “First Concerto” for flute and percussion written in 1939, Daniel Berg has composed a five-movement work that plays homage to Harrison’s original piece as well as develops Berg’s own ideas within the genre of flute and percussion. While some of the original inspiration is evident in the first movement, Berg moves the other movements in interesting directions not explored by Harrison.One element shared by the Harrison piece and this work is the need for only one percussionist. While the original work was written with two percussion parts, it is very commonly performed by a single percussionist performing both parts simultaneously. Berg allows for a similar option, allowing for one player to play both parts when there are two parts, making the second part optional, or only writing a single percussion part in the case of movements two, three, and four.Stylistically, each movement is different. The first consists of driving rhythms centered around a meter set of 4/8, 5/8, 5/8, and 2/8. This movement is very much an homage to Harrison’s original work. The second is a slower, rubato movement for flute and vibraphone. The third movement focuses on percussive effects by the flute while the percussion centers on a multipercussion setup. Movement four allows the flutist to move the music along in a free manner as the percussionist contributes pedal-tones by blowing on a glass bottle tuned to A-flat. The final movement begins with an improvisation by the flutist before moving into a rhythmically driving section for the rest of the movement with the percussionist on marimba and an optional percussionist playing a mixture of drums and cymbals.Berg has created a wonderful companion piece to Harrison’s original work, which pays just the right amount of credit to the original while also establishing its own identity. The pieces are different enough that they could complement each other well on the same program, and would be appropriate for college or professional performers.—Brian Nozny
Enamel painting: Bengt Berglund
Photo (Daniel Berg): Per Buhre
Front Cover: Gaia Gomes
Engraving: Daniel Berg / Johan Svitzer
Printed in Copenhagen, Denmark
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