marimba and sampled sounds (2002)
Robert Armengol, marimba
Ayehli is available on Innova Recordings 662 (Alexandra Gardner, Luminoso)
pre-recorded electronics (CD or laptop)
Duration: 12 minutes
Commissioned by: Paul Cox
Premiere: March 17, 2003
Contemporary Music Forum at the Corcoran Gallery of Art, Washington, DC
Ayehli was written for marimbist Paul Cox. The title is the Cherokee word for twin; the literal translation is "other wing". For me it speaks to the relationship between the marimba and the electronic sounds; rising out of and falling into one another, melting together, always close.
The two primary sound sources for the electronic part are marimba, and recordings from the "Ground Zero" site in New York City, taken at sunrise one morning last December. My intention in using this soundscape material was to transform the results of a tragedy into something more positive and beautiful.
San Francisco Classical Voice | Edward Ortiz
For the performance [by Citywater] much of the focus was cast on Gardner, a Baltimore composer with a deft touch at writing for the marimba and other percussion instruments. This ability played out elegantly in the round and poetic musical patterns of Ayehli, which paired a marimba with recordings made at Ground Zero shortly after 9/11.