Background on

Spectrum 26

The original title for this piece was Short Overture No. 2. But the program on which it was to be premiered already contained an overture. So the title was changed.
The piece was written for the Greece (New York) Community Orchestra outside Rochester, NY in 1971. Many of the community orchestras in the Rochester area depend on local residents and on students at the Eastman School of Music to make up their rosters.
In this case, the strings were primarily local residents and the winds and brass were students. The strings players were not familiar with playing 20th Century music whereas the students were.
I wrote the piece with these limitations in mind, giving the string players easier, more tonal music lines. And I gave the wind and brass players more atonal parts.
The piece is based on two themes, the first being  stated at the very beginning. The second theme comes into play with an announcement from the French horns at the end of the first part.
My composition teacher, Samuel Adler, after hearing the piece for the first time, indicated he would have liked a little more excitement towards the end and suggested that I extend a particular section. It would several years before I made this addition and that is the piece heard here.
I conducted the premiere of this work in May, 1971.

Richard Audd

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