**Small Infinities (2015)**

**for piano and orchestra**

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PROGRAM NOTE

PROGRAM NOTE

*Small Infinities*, for glockenspiel and string orchestra, was commissioned by Scott Farkas and the Magic Valley Symphony with a grant from the College of Southern Idaho. Infinity is an odd concept. When most of us think of infinity we imagine the continuum of whole numbers (1, 2, 3, 4…) and we know that even if we counted forever we would never run out of numbers: the set represents an infinity. But if we consider, for example, the set of even numbers (2, 4, 6, 8…) we realize that though we could count by twos indefinitely, there are only half as many numbers comprising this particular representation of infinity. Compared to the set of whole numbers, then, the set of even numbers is an example of a “small infinity.” An even smaller infinity is the set of prime numbers. In this composition, the glockenspiel articulates the first 1,000 primes (starting at 2 and ending at 7,919) against a metrical timeline of 32nd-notes while the strings articulate the first 299 primes (2–1,979) in quarter notes. As the work progresses, an increasing number of prime-number time-points are moved from the strings to the solo part, resulting in two-note glockenspiel simultaneities. As the two strands of prime-number articulations interact over the work’s sixteen-minute duration, the harmonic relationship between glockenspiel and strings gradually transforms from complete differentiation at the start (twelve pitches total: six in the glockenspiel part; six in the strings; none shared) to total unity at the end (six pitches shared by the glockenspiel and strings).