Program Notes

Memories holds a special place in my heart because it was my first-ever composition for marimba. Three contrasting movements make up this piece, each representing a different memory from my life. Each
movement creates a unique melodic mood, including unease and discomfort, loss and sorrow, and joy and playfulness.

The first movement, Memories of Lurking Shadows, is inspired by memories of discomfort and unease. It evokes the feeling of walking down a dark alley at night, constantly looking over your shoulder. Maybe there is someone following you, but maybe your mind is playing tricks on you. “Memories of Lurking Shadows” reflects this fear of the unknown and uneasy self-doubt.

The tension in this movement is created through a simple, repetitive melody that sings out over an increasingly busy supporting harmonic line. As the movement progresses, the rhythmic complexity grows,
and the tension with it. “Memories of Lurking Shadows” gives players the opportunity to practice expression through careful voicing and controlled tempo manipulation.

Mallet Suggestion: Medium Soft to Medium



The second movement, Memories of Loss, is inspired by the loss of Phyllis and John Spade. The Spades were dear friends of my family who, for all intents and purposes, were like a third set of grandparents to me. They passed away within a few short years of each other.

This movement embodies the deep sorrow I felt at the loss of these wonderful people. Its mournful chord progressions and deep harmonic structures provide opportunities for controlled but delicate work in the
softer dynamics. 


Mallet Suggestion: Soft

In stark contrast to the tension of Memories of Lurking Shadows and the mournful richness of Memories of Sorrow, the final movement, Memories in the Playhouse is not serene but joyful. It is inspired by
memories of seeing my mother, Freida, at the preschool where she works. Freida is a brilliant educator; she teaches with patience and kindness, and she knows that children learn just as much from play as
they do from work.

The bright melody and rolling accompaniment of Memories in the Playhouse evoke both the sounds of children’s laughter and my own pride at getting to see my mother in her element, practicing the craft of
shaping young minds. This movement gives players plenty of opportunities for lyrical expression through melodic voicing and a wide range of dynamics. As the final movement of Memories, Memories in

the Playhouse is sure to leave audiences smiling.


Mallet Suggestion: Medium Hard