From the composer:
Although there are approximately 60 arrangements and compositions for bass clarinet quartet from the Edmund Welles Library, there is currently (October 2011) only one piece from zeroth Law that departs from this four bass clarinet instrumentation, and that is the bass clarinet duo piece written in 2008 for Sqwonk (Jeff Anderle and Jonathan Russell, also members of Edmund Welles).
This was a chance to write more transparent textures, more sincere melodic gestures, and more blazingly virtuosic, high-speed material than appears in the quartet compositions: a piece that was both more concise and intimate while also being adventurous and ambitious. The result was 5 vignettes connected together to form a close-up and personal journey, hence, Sojourn of the Face.
Ideally the players will forge an intimate and precise renditions of each section that reflects, in some way, the part of the face to which it corresponds. The clues to which section goes with which part of the face are in the rehearsal letters: M = mouth; E = ears; H = head/frontal lobe/neo-cortex; I = eyes; N = nose. There is a correspondence to the moods of each section and the functions of these parts of the face, but each player/duo should explore that personally and interpret accordingly. That being said, the recording of “Sojourn of the Face” on the Sqwonk album “Black” is an excellent reference for how effectively this piece can be performed.
- Cornelius Boots