Bryan: Shedding Skin

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COMPOSER’S NOTE Shedding Skin for Orchestra is inspired by the poem of the same name by Harryette Mullen from her book Tree Tall Woman (1981), as well as by conversations from the JCOI-ACO Institute in 2012. Shedding Skin deals with the question: what does it mean to notate improvisation? How does one who is at home in a jazz improvisatory context translate certain values and concepts into notation for performers in a classical orchestral context? How does one actualize the same vision and feeling in the written score, as one would while improvising, whether alone or with other improvisers? Also, how could I use the orchestra to represent what this poem means to me on a personal level?! ! Shedding Skin (1981) by Harryette Mullen Pulling out of the old scarred skin (old rough thing I don't need now I strip off slip out of leave behind) I slough off deadscales flick skinflakes to the ground Shedding toughness peeling layers down to vulnerable stuff And I'm blinking off old eyelids for a new way of seeing By the rock I rub against I'm going to be tender again

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