for euphonium and wind symphony
I met Caleb Crouch through Northern Symphonic Winds, during the year they commissioned and performed my On the Threshold of Spring. Impressed by his sheer talent, and connected via a mutual love of Dungeons and Dragons and/or The Legend of Zelda, I couldn’t wait to write him a concerto.
Since we’re both fans of grand adventures, that’s the approach I decided to take. Something that feels like a journey. In this case, a Monomyth, or, “A Hero’s Journey.” Perhaps a bit nautical, occasionally serene, and often thrilling (particularly Movement III.). The piece starts and ends with a dark, ominous theme that can be heard throughout all three movements. Like a trilogy of films, this one musical motive remains throughout the whole work.
With Caleb’s agility on the Euphonium, I had a blast creating an atmosphere of adventure. From ultra-low, calm, sustained pitches, to the intensity of high sweeps and trills, Caleb’s range on the Euphonium is nothing short of impressive. His various skills as a performer inspired nearly every movement.
However, in any hero’s tale — through fiction or in film — there are almost always companions. The ensemble, in this case, is featured as the “Euphonium’s companion.” Mimicking the soloists motives, calling-and-responding, and generally driving the Euphonium (the hero) forward, the full wind symphony acts less as a backbone and more as core character in this auditory journey.
Embark your ears on this Monomyth Concerto. May you find your way “...there and back again.”
Monomyth Concerto was to be premiered in Spring 2020, but was temporarily postponed due to the COVID pandemic.
Live performance recording coming soon...