Quartet No. 1 by James Meador was written in the summer of 2004 and premiered in August of that same year by the UL Lafayette Trombone Quartet at a benefit concert for the Acadiana Symphony Orchestra in Lafayette, Louisiana. The piece consists of two movements, each designed to highlight the choral characteristics of the trombone quartet (or trombone choir), but with a strong emphasis on dissonance.
Novus Sonorous opens with a rhythmic and dissonant introduction before leading into a three way struggle for the melody. A singing line eventually emerges and leads us into a powerful chordal motive, then backs down to another closely scored and dissonant chorale. The opening statement returns briefly and carries us back to the mighty chordal section before a mournful and ponderous conclusion.
Ludus Tonalis begins with an intense and again closely scored, very dissonant chorale figure, then immediately jumps into a playful mixed meter section bouncing around from 7/8 to 2/4 to 6/8. This section leads into a sort of rhythmic fanfare where the melody is derived from entrances of the chord tones, then dies down into somewhat of a dark portrayal of the main theme in a choral style. Once again we encounter the playful section before closing out the piece on a forceful and energetic drive to the end.
- James Meador
Score and Parts Included: Trombone 1-3, Bass Trombone