By Maithili Sule
For the Diamondback
Flute ensemble Flutronix shared the stage with percussion group Third Coast Percussion Sunday to perform their co-composed piece, “Rubix,” as a part of the Visiting Artist Series at The Clarice Smith Performing Arts Center.
David Skidmore, of Third Coast Percussion, said it had been such a joy to create music with Flutronix over the past few weeks.
Both acts performed separately composed pieces before joining together for the co-composition.
Flutronix accompanied its flutes with spoken-word poetry in its piece “Water Babies from Black Being,” along with electronic music in their piece “Flock.” Third Coast Percussion played a variety of instruments, from xylophones to mixing bowls filled with water for “Derivative,” a movement off of their 2022 album Perspectives.
Third Coast Percussion member Peter Martin said they played the bowls to imitate the electronic sounds created by their frequent collaborator, Jlin, who also composed Perspectives.
“[Jlin] is just this really amazing composer and electronic music producer that we first came to know just by reading a review of an album of her’s on Pitchfork, and checked out her music, and really fell in love with it,” Skidmore said.
“Rubix” consisted of three movements called “Still,” “Play” and “Go.” Named after the popular toy, “Rubix” was inspired by musical games.
“We had some guesses for the musical ideas that were kind of like rooted in play and games and rules,” Flutronix member Allison Loggins-Hull said. “Everybody kind of came in with a handful of simple ideas. So we kind of applied these game rules with their musical ideas, and recorded everything. I mean, it was super experimental.”
The performance marked the end of a the ensembles’ tour, which included stops at Rowan University and the Modlin Center for the Arts at University of Richmond.
“The faculty has always been super welcoming of us, and the students have always been really, really insightful and always consistently asked very great questions,” Loggins-Hull said.
Part of the Visiting Artist Series at The Clarice included panel discussions and lectures, which Loggins-Hull said was, “a really nice mix of getting to spend time in the music school with the music students and then working with the staff and the arts administration of the Clarice.”