We know and love Qasim Naqvi primarily as one-third of the tremendous avant-jazz ensemble Dawn Of Midi. But when he’s not rocking out on the drums with his trio, the Brooklyn-based percussionist and composer is involved in a plethora of other projects. Naqvi has produced and composed music for film, dance, theatre, and chamber ensembles, amongst many other ventures.
Preamble, a collection of short chamber works written by Naqvi and performed by the Contemporary Music Ensemble of NYU, under the direction of Jonathan Haas, is coming out next month via NNA Tapes. These compositions were originally commissioned by media artist Mariam Ghani, choreographer Erin Ellen Kelly, and the St. Louis Art Museum as a score to a film installation based on China Miéville’s novel The City & the City.
Here’s what Naqvi said about combining graphic notation with traditional notational forms in Preamble:
“Some of the graphic components deal with dynamics and expression, while others deal with duration and rhythm or ranges that are unique to the particular instruments in the ensemble. This symbolic language is fused into a more conventional style of notation. The conductor can let the ensemble go about their business or at any point, assert a different set of choices into the equation. With “Preamble,” I wanted to strike a balance. I wanted the element of chance but not total chance. The performers can make certain choices for themselves, based on the watchful impulses of the conductor.”
Take a listen to the magnificent ‘Children of the Drawer PT. 1’ and check out the teaser trailer straight after. And be sure to grab Preamble when it drops on November 13th.