Commissioned by the MIT Wind Ensemble, Fred Harris, director, with the support of Richard Nordlof
First performance: March 15, 2002, Kresge Auditorium, Cambridge, MA - Evan Ziporyn, soloist; Fred Harris, conductor; MIT Wind Ensemble
Recording: Frog's Eye (Cantaloupe), 2004 - Evan Ziporyn, soloist; Gil Rose, conductor; Boston Modern Orchestra Project
Also available on MIT Wind Ensemble: Waking Winds (Innova), 2004 - Evan Ziporyn, soloist; Fred Harris, conductor; MIT Wind Ensemble
The concerto form springs from romanticism: its default metaphor is that of the heroic individual, emerging from and exalted by his fellow man. This is not really my thing, but I do have a strong desire to make music with my wind brethren, to do things on our instruments together. I am also conscious of the complex ways in which teachers and students relate, and this piece reflects this, at least in my mind. In war movies and sitcoms, it's always struck me that the drill sergeant works at least as hard as the recruits, running alongside, exhorting and cajoling to be sure, but never really asking them to do things he himself couldn't or wouldn't do. Not that that necessarily has anything to do with the title of this piece, I just thought I'd mention it.