The world of this piece was shaped by my experience as a runner. As a runner maintains control of her body in pursuit of a quantifiable goal while negotiating the vagaries of her physical condition, it is in how the performer handles the constant physical struggle of the trombone writing that determines how and if this piece comes off.
I like to think of this work less as a piece of music than as an "energetic sculpture": an arrangement in time of qualities and intensities of the body; and interplay of strain, release, focus, tension, dissolution, and force. The title is from the Greek for "sign of rough breathing", a term originally used to denote the aspirate sign in ancient Greek and later adopted as a means of musical notation, the so-called "Daseian" notation of the 9th and 10th centuries.
The trombonist and the singers occupy two entirely different, but tangential worlds. While the trombone part is volatile and chaotic, the writing for the vocal ensemble is restrained, orderly, and evocative of a more conventional musical language.
Prosodia Daseia (b) was premiered by Will Lang and Ekmeles at the DiMenna Center in New York City on June 29th, 2015 as part of the Five Boroughs Music Festival.
This piece also exists in an alternate version for solo trombone entitled Prosodia Daseia (a)