for 26 brass instruments
The title of this work, which translates as “light is like water,” is borrowed from the title of a story by the great Colombian writer, Gabriel García Márquez. The piece attempts to reflect the simple, but potent, imagery of the title, and is not concerned with the story itself.
The work is written in a straightforward arch form (ABCBA), with an extended coda based on motives from the main body of the piece. Despite the large brass ensemble, much, although certainly not all, of the piece is quiet and subtle. All players are muted most of the time, some for the entire piece, and I have tried to use the brass in many different ways from the conventional bombast (not that I have anything against bombast; I use that in other brass pieces). Many of the wonderful effects available on brass are exploited-lip trills, timbral trills between two different fingerings of the same pitch, overtone glissandos, etc.-all, I hope, in a way that contributes to the musical effect, and not simply for their own sake.
La luz es como el agua was written for the University of Louisville trumpet and euphonium/tuba ensembles and their directors, Michael Tunnell and John Jones, for their performance at the International Trumpet Guild Conference at Indiana University in May of 1995. It has been recorded by the Louisville Brass.