A snail's tale

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Grohe, Ethan
MacDonald, David
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Grohe, Ethan. 2024. A snail's tale. -- In Proceedings: 23rd Annual Undergraduate Research and Creative Activity Forum. Wichita, KS: Wichita State University, p. 14.

My piece is written for brass quintet (2 trumpets, french horn, trombone, and bass trombone) and was inspired by the book, The Sound Of A Wild Snail Eating by Elisabeth Tova Bailey. It follows the author’s experience of being bedridden for a year alongside her pet snail. Half of the book consists of comfy commentary about her experiences with the snail. The other half is highly scientific research about all facets of snail biology and importance. Introduction Are In Order The first movement starts with a fanfare, announcing the snail as it marches around, and the rest of the movement uses material that shows up throughout the whole piece, serving as an appetizer for things to come. Epiphragm Epiphragm starts quietly with unsteady and ambiguous entrances as the snail becomes sleepy. Then, the piece becomes very rhythmic, evoking a dance-like quality, as the snail dreams. The piece ends with the snail slowly waking up, blearily. Off To Work After sleeping so long, the snail needs to get back to work! Snails decompose organic material such as dead leaves and shrubbery allowing for our environment to maintain its healthy metabolism. I imagine the snail strutting around and dedicated to its job. This movement is by far the jazziest, with lots of crunchy chords and slick sounds. It ends suddenly as the snail notices something in the distance. Snail Love While work is good, the snail longs for someone to share their stories with. The first section is sorrowful but turns wistful when the snail encounters another snail! After a brief chat, the snails work together to the sound of a New Orleans style romp with a special focus on the bass trombone. As the snails end their time together, they depart, feeling a bit more connected with the world around them.

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Presented to the 23rd Undergraduate Research and Creative Activity Forum (URCAF) held at the Rhatigan Student Center, Wichita State University, April 12, 2024.
Wichita State University
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