Small Worlds (2006)
for flute, clarinet, violin, cello, and piano
Luna Nova Ensemble
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Small Worlds—for flute, clarinet, violin, cello, and piano—is the result of a joint commission from the Luna Nova Ensemble and Ensemble Anura. The work, completed in spring of 2006, lasts approximately nine minutes. The title refers to the work of Mark Buchanan, who writes about small world network theory, expanding on the idea of “six degrees of separation” (also known, popularly, as the “Kevin Bacon Principle”). Theories of networks are in many ways applicable to theories of music, and Small Worlds explores some possible intersections and interactions between two different “networks” of pitch and rhythm—one articulated primarily by the flute, clarinet, and violin; the other articulated primarily by the cello and piano.