Sleuth (2011)

for tuba and piano
10 minutes

Program Note

Though sections of the work may sound reminiscent to cues from detective movies and television, the title derives from what turned out to be an intricate process of composing a simple melody. I had written several sketches, trials, and errors before finally uncovering one. The work begins with sly, wandering gestures, and then progresses through a series of contrasting scenes. These scenes are not intended to depict any event in particular; in fact, many of the “cinematic” moments resulted accidentally in the early writing stages. However, at times, the passages may evoke the typical smoky bar setting with a jazz combo in the background, or perhaps a quarrelsome incident. Traces of the tune are embedded within the searched locations, and it finally occurs in its full form in the tuba towards the end of the work.

Sleuth was commissioned by tubist, David Holben.