Michael Torke: "Mojave"
Born: September 22, 1961, Milwaukee, WI
Instrumentation: Marimba soloist and Wind Ensemble
Duration: 16 minutes
Mojave is a marimba concerto commissioned by the 2010 Tromp International Music Competition and Festival, and written for Colin Currie. It has three versions, marimba with string quartet, and marimba with wind ensemble, and marimba and orchestra. The Mojave Desert, located in southern Nevada and northern California, is an arid landscape with sparse vegetation. The pulse of the marimba with accompaniment represents the moving panorama as you drive Interstate 15 between Las Vegas and Los Angeles. This is held together by the 8th notes of the maraca player—sounding like the dry prickly plant life—who plays throughout.