Azteccia Sketches (2017)
for trombone and piano
The lore of Azteccia comes from a series of recurring dreams in which I (in the form of a fox) would explore a dreamscape divided into four quadrants, each with its own animalistic rulers. The south is a massive rainforest with swamps and lush foliage. Banto, a gorilla who rules from an overgrown medieval-style castle, values affection and respect above all else, believing it can conquer even what nature might try to forbid. The north is mountainous, scattered with crag rock and tall slender white firs. Raza, the lioness of this region, lives in a stone house on the edge of a steep cliff, living most of her days in a drunken stupor. She values the blissful pleasures the world has to offer as well as the authenticity of self-expression. The east is a desert land, filled with dry shrubs and red mountains. Tsame, a tiger who lives in a blue and green oasis, values an appreciation for the complexity of a world filled with contradictions. This concept can easily be applied one’s own personal beliefs. Each warns him of the tyrant bear of the west, Giriyama, a conqueror who lives in an ancient pyramid surrounded by forest and vines. He values strength above all else, and offers to share his mystic power to the fox (in exchange for blind servitude). The fox refuses the bear’s offer, and instead seeks to dethrone the tyrant of the west. The music was written to encapsulate these characters, and to provide sketches of an overall larger story. All titles and subtitles were provided after the fact to make narrative sense of the chaos that is a dream.
Azteccia Sketches was premiered on June 13th, 2017 by Dr. Matthew Russo and later given a second performance on September 19th, 2017.
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