Playing on the tribal nature of percussion instruments, Joe Moore has created a dazzling work of virtuosity for two players sharing a marimba and playing off their own multi-percussion set-ups.
Barbaric Passages was commissioned by Robert Giovanelli and Patrick Chapman. This work was premiered on their joint recital at the University of South Carolina in the spring of 2011.
When writing this work I envisioned the barbaric nature of percussion from nation to nation and country to country. Most, if not all percussion instruments have a tribal nature about them and I wanted to portray this idea in the work. There was also a process in choosing the instrumentation. I chose the marimba, metal sounds, and wood sounds to represent the earth itself. I chose the drums to represent the tribal/war-like natures of different countries. The drums I have selected have war/tribal usage in their historical origin.
Most of all, I wanted to write a work that was fun and challenging for the performers, as well as engaging and enjoyable for the audience.
Grade Level: 3
Number of Players: 2