Rapid Unscheduled Disassembly
Concert Band (Grade 4)
Approximate Total Length: 6 Minutes
Anticipated Delivery Date: October 1, 2023
Picc, Flute 1, Flute 2, Oboe 1, Oboe 2, Bassoon 1, Bassoon 2,
Bb Clarinet 1, Bb Clarinet 2, Bb Clarinet 3, Bb Bass Cl, Cb Cl. (opt);
Alto Sax 1, Alto Sax 2, Tenor Sax, Bari Sax;
Bb Trumpet 1, Bb Trumpet 2, Bb Trumpet 3, F Horn 1, F Horn 2,
Trombone 1, Trombone 2, Trombone 3 (optional b. tbn.) Euphonium (B.C/T.C. provided), Tuba;
String Bass (opt.), 5 percussion.
Consortium Leader: Dr. Curran Prendergast, Truman State University
It's been wonderful to see pieces like Hivemind, Astrarium, and Echo Chambers circulate among collegiate (and even occasionally high school) ensembles around the country and beyond. But I've also heard a common phrase from several friends/colleagues who run concert bands: When are you going to write something easy enough for my group to play?
I'm doing it now! This piece will be a level of “Grade 4” aimed squarely at smaller or non-major collegiate ensembles and high school groups. I will also be carefully cueing parts in some of the harder-to-secure instrument parts (double reeds in particular) in strategic ways, in order to offer as much flexibility in instrumentation as possible for ensembles at smaller programs. If your group has played one of my earlier/tricker pieces like Hivemind, Astrarium, or Echo Chambers, I think this will still be a fun and gratifying piece, but a quicker/easier rehearsal preparation, and much more accommodating of larger part doublings and variety in ensemble-size.
A bit about the inspiration behind this upcoming piece:
When it comes to space travel, I'm basically a 7-year-old (which turns out to be great for bonding with my 7-year-old over things like highly publicized rocket launches). When SpaceX's unmanned giant rocket Starship recently exploded four minutes into its launch, it was met with cheering and applause of SpaceX engineers in the control room. Confusing at first, I thought it was wonderful that we might openly celebrate “failure” when it teaches us valuable things (something I’m constantly trying to impress upon my composition students!). When the company euphemistically described the explosion as a “Rapid Unscheduled Disassembly” (a phrase that was new to me, but has been apparently dates back to the 1980s in relation to test launches), I simply thought that this was too good of a title for a piece to pass up.
This will be a fun, bombastic, 6-minute piece for concert band, and a celebration of spectacular “failure” in all of its exuberance.
If your ensemble is interested in joining this consortium, please fill out the form
at the bottom of this page.
The Consortium will be limited to 30 members, who will have exclusivity on programming the piece through the 2023-24 concert season.
You can also contact me directly with any questions/inquiries.
Consortium Commission Fee for "Rapid Unscheduled Disassembly"
You can use this button, or directly contact the composer with
requests for invoices. Fees can be paid any time before the consortium closes (10/1/23).