Stephen Chase


for string quartet

duration: 6 - 7 minutes

Side/Walk/Shuffle may be presented in a number of different ways:

(1) as a concert piece for one or two string quartets (amplification is optional)

(2) as a ‘performance installation’ for one or more string quartets in a public space (unamplified)


(3) like the second version but amplified - the amplified sound is presented and mixed at an adjacent or entirely separate location.

Each performer is presented with material (much of it very similar) that may be combined in any order. By following the instructions at the end of each extract a performer then plays the next extract attending either to precise bowing directions or their relationship to the rest of the quartet in terms of timbral blend and contrast.

The piece takes its title from the film of the same name by Ernie Gehr in which a city is viewed from glass elevators. It is also a tribute to both Ernie Gehr and the late Iannis Xenakis.

Stephen Chase was born in London in 1973. Initially self-taught in composition, he later studied for an MMus with George Nicholson at Sheffield University.

Currently he is a research student investigating collaborative improvisation and experimental music at Sheffield University, supervised by Prof. Eric Clarke.

His pieces have been performed by pianist Philip Thomas, members of COMA and London Sinfonietta (State of the Nation 1998), students of the Sheffield Music School, Liverpool Metropolitan Orchestra, and PM Ensemble, amongst others.

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