Music for orchestra by Mark Zuckerman
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Composed for community orchestras
Susquehanna Sunset [2112/2121/3 perc./strings] (5' ACA)  written for and premiered by the Susquehanna Symphony, a community orchestra conducted by Sheldon Bair in Bel Air, Maryland. It is a tone poem in which the opening figure, composed of two rising leaps, is echoed and turned in on itself, acquiring harmonic coloring along the way. These elements are patiently recombined and re-combed, exploring a range of colors increasingly rich yet diffuse, until finally reaching a definitive expression before dissolving back into its elements. The process to me is evocative of a clear sky at dusk, where the unhurried setting sun creates a collection of colors that gradually combine and recombine, becoming brilliant in a final moment before dissipating.
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Civic Celebration [3222/4331/4 timpani/4 perc./strings](7' ACA) written for and premiered by the Holyoke (Massachusetts) Civic Symphony conducted by David Kidwell, who called it "a terrific concert opener ... both the orchestra and the audience enjoyed it." I was inspired to write Civic Celebration for the Holyoke Civic Symphony after hearing  the Symphony playe my Susquehanna Sunset. I was quite impressed by the verve and commitment evident in all the performances on the program and by the loyalty and support shown the Symphony by the people from the community who came to hear it. Civic Celebration is offered as a tribute to the Holyoke Civic Symphony on its 50th anniversary. It has a kind of exuberant nobility, as befitting both the occasion and the spirit with which the Symphony and its director pursue their mission. Civic Celebration gives everyone in the orchestra something important to contribute even instruments not normally in the forefront, like piccolo and triangle, play crucial roles. The piece begins and ends with a fanfare. In between, there are two themes both based on the fanfare which are explored sequentially and then combined.
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