First performance: Killian Hall, Cambridge, MA, February 11, 1991 - Evan Ziporyn, solo bass clarinet; Ted Kuhn, electronics
Recording: Animal Act (CRI), 1993 - Evan Ziporyn, solo bass clarinet; Ted Kuhn, electronics
Walk the Dog is a one-movement concerto for bass clarinet and pre-recorded electronics. It was originally conceived as an orchestra piece, but as work progressed I realized that what I really wanted backing me up was an impossible, world orchestra. I wanted an Egyptian film string section, Gambian harpists, Balinese frogs and jaw harps. So I scrapped the orchestral version (it's still never been played) and enlisted Ted Kuhn, a wonderful musician with a good sample library (a rarity in those days) and the ear to know what to do with it. As a result, the sonic texture of the piece matches its melodies and rhythms, all East/West, electro/acoustic hybrids. I would like to acknowledge Ted's huge contribution to this project: his ability to create and manipulate the sounds I had in mind made the piece come to life.