Bonkers was written for Glen Velez and the New Jersey Percussion Ensemble, in honor of their outstanding contributions to contemporary music over many decades. In the early part of the piece the soloist engages the three non-pitched percussionists in a series of duets, while the glockenspiel, marimba, and vibraphone play a pattern of slowly chiming intervals. Later on the pitched instruments come to the fore. The piece highlights the wide variety of timbres and expressive characters that frame drums can produce in the hands of an extraordinary musician like Glen. It is dedicated to him and to the New Jersey Percussion Ensemble, conducted by Payton MacDonald, Peter Jarvis, Director.
premiere: Nov 17, 2018, PASIC18, Indianapolis, IN
Glen Velez, frame drum, The New Jersey Percussion Ensemble: John Ferrari, glockenspiel; Jessi Gerbassi, marimba; Paul Carrol, vibraphone; Peter Jarvis, percussion 1; Ken Paiscik, percussion 2; Mike Aberback, percussion 3; Payton Macdonald, conductor.