Kvart i Fyra was commissioned by James Campbell for the University of Kentucky Percussion Ensemble and premiered at their showcase concert at the 2004 Percussive Arts Society International Convention in Nashville, TN. -I feel honored to be almost one of the ‘house composers’ for the UK percussion ensemble. I got inspired from last time when I composed Finding Fossils for 17 percussion players and a solo flute (Miles Osland) also when UK played at PASIC. So this time around, the set up is for four choirs of instruments: steel pans, metal keyboards, wooden keyboards, and orchestra percussion. Jim asked if it could be written for 19-23 players so that the entire studio could be involved. I had the whole summer and I tried some ideas but only produced about 8 bars. Suddenly in August everything came together as I had additional ideas everywhere on small papers and in my head. I called my copyist/engraver (Daniel Saur) and it was time to get it together on paper. We had fun in my kitchen office, with a lot of strong Swedish coffee, and had the piece together at 3:45 in the morning. A”quarter to four” in Swedish is “Kvart i fyra”. (Anders Astrand)
The groups can be increased with additional players. If you have access to 3 or more 5-octave marimbas, feel free to first double Marimba III then Marimba II. The Steelpan group can be expanded as long as the “inner balance” is maintained.