Sounder Rounds
1982 – 1983


c. 20'


Edition Peters

Instrumentation Notes


Program Notes

[This score was previously self-published by Earle Brown. It is available in print from Edition Peters as of 2007.]

Sounder Rounds (1982-1983) was commissioned by the SAARLAENDISCHER RUNDFUNK and seems to me to be the 3rd. in a related series of works for large orchestra, the other two being, TIME SPANS and NEW PIECE: LOOPS, the latter also utilizing a large chorus and both works from 1972.

The three works are each based on a relatively simple sonic condition which is compositionally explored by fragmentation, juxtaposition, collage techniques and variations which can be made in the actual conducting of the works. As in many of my works, this piece is basically “closed form” but has areas in which the basic composed material can be sequenced and juxtaposed spontaneously by the conductor. This potential for a work I originally (in 1952) called, “mobile score,” as influenced first by Alexander Calder, but is now generally referred to in music as, “open-form”…the actual final form of each performance being different and unique but always being recognizable as this particular work due to the unchanging basic composed material content. In concept it is similar to viewing many aspects and details of a sculpture as one walks around it at different speeds and in different directions, or (as in my original influence from Calder) as the elements of a “mobile” constantly change in relation to each other.

The “relatively simple” elements of SOUNDER ROUNDS are rather dense “streams” of sound which expand, contract, separate, change shape and color, and “fields of vertical aggregates (chords) which a German critic has referred to as “sound columns” in writing of other of my works.
—Earle Brown

More Information

Instrumentation Orchestra: 2 (Fl,Alt)-3 (3.EH)-3 (3.B.Kl)-2 (2.Kontra) / 4-3-2-1 / Perc. (Glock.,Vib.,Xyl.,Mar.,), Pn, Hf / Str: 12-10-8-6-4 (all string parts divisi a 2)

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Selected Performances

May 12, 1983 • Saarbruecken, Germany

Ensemble: Rundfunk-Sinfonieorchester SaarbrueckenConductor: Earle Brown

May 11, 1983 • Saarbruecken, Germany

Ensemble: Rundfunk-Sinfonieorchester SaarbrueckenConductor: Earle Brown, world premiere

Sample Page

Sounder Rounds sample page


Earle Brown Music Foundation