return to Compositions

Jugalbandi, duo for tabla and marimba, 2007:

In North Indian Hindustani music a jugalbandi is a musical duet.  (The well-known concerts Ravi Shankar and Ali Akbar Khan performed together throughout the 1960s and 70s are a good example of this.)  This work is for tabla and marimba.  The marimba part is written out; the tabla part includes some improvisation.  Jugalbandi is densely polyrhythmic, with rapid iterations of rhythmic patterns related by adjacent numbers.  The two parts are generally equal and the marimba often functions as a giant drum with at least 52 wooden beating spots.  Harmony serves rhythm, shading and coloring the polyrhythmic thickets.  I wrote Jugalbandi for Shawn Mativetsky and Catherine Meunier, who premiered it in August 2007.