Kenza’s 40 Days

Our daughter has been with us 40 days, which is a significant milestone in Islam. The number 40 appears a great deal in the literature of all the Abrahamic religions.

“Fourths + Fifths” is the first movement of the three-movement work Kenza (2012). It is structured around a sequence of six diatonic modes, each associated with a melodic pattern. Each pattern builds from a single arpeggio to block chords by layering in canon (superimposing several phased copies of the pattern, i.e. the same pattern with different starting points and/or octaves), although this process is only made clear with the first pattern. The intervals of the fourth and fifth predominate both melodically and harmonically throughout.

This recording was made on the date of the post. I will post the entire suite at a later date.

Composed December 2012
Recorded January 2013

Photo by Nehal El-Hadi

Music and composer’s notes copyright Bruce Russell 2013

By elmahboob

Bruce A. Russell aka Ibrahim El Mahboob (b. Kingston, ON, 1968) is a composer and self-taught pianist living and working in Toronto (Tkarón:to, the traditional territory of many nations including the Mississaugas of the Credit, the Anishnabeg, the Chippewa, the Haudenosaunee and the Wendat). He studied at York University with James Tenney and Phillip Werren. He has composed music for the Madawaska String Quartet, Modern Times Stage Company, McMaster Dancers and choreographers Pam Johnson and Tracy Renee Stafford. Interest in his work increased in 2020, with performances by Arraymusic, Prism Percussion, Second Note Duo, San Juan Symphony and Idaho Falls Symphony. He was host of Radio Music Gallery, and has written for Musicworks and I Care if You Listen. His interests are in 20th and 21st century concert music especially postminimalism, and music of the African diaspora including notated and non-notated forms. He is a parent of three and is employed in the financial sector.

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