nicholas cline | composer

Streams (2012) Homage to John Cage

percussion quartet

  1. grainstream
  2. groovestream
  3. cagestream


  • Square Peg Round Hole, Indiana University, Ford-Crawford Hall, 11/11/2012
  • Sean Gill, Bobby Conselatore, Carlos Pacheco-Perez, Julian Loida, Indiana University, Auer Hall 10/02/2012

Program Note:

An experience comes to mind that parallels the evolving sound worlds of Streams. Once on a very rainy hiking trip, small waterfalls began to form and run across the trail. They were spaced at intervals so that as the sound of one faded away, the next became audible. Each miniature waterfall had its own particular character and color. Analogies comparing music to water are plentiful and the idea of a continuous flow of sound is essential in Streams. Moreover, the notion that the world around us is in a constant flux is especially important. The expression, "you cannot step into the same river twice," perfectly captures the spirit of this piece.

I began writing Streams after a great deal of musing about the music and writings of John Cage; his influence is apparent. grainstream creates an evolving sound world with the simple gesture of pouring small objects into resonant vessels. groovestream is an open piece that explores rhythmic ostinatos and grooves. cagestream is a journey from diffuse, noisy sounds to resonant, pitched sounds. Traditional percussion instruments (woodblocks, cowbells) are paired with sounds from everyday objects (crinkling paper, clinking coins).

Many thanks to Square Peg Round Hole for the amazing premiere performance. Follow the band HERE!

View the score: [PDF]
View the videos: grainstream, groovestream, cagestream.