Scott Miller: The Frost Performs its Secret Ministry


This piece is the result of another collaboration to explore new ways of writing for the Kingma system alto flute. Jonathan Pitkin’s approach here is to reverse the Written for Linda Chatterton and Jesse Langa in 2013, this is a beautifully atmospheric work for flute and guitar with electronics. Scott and I have collaborated on various projects since 2011, including our improvised CD, Devices and Desires, and I am delighted to have the opportunity to work with him again this September, performing at The Forge, KISS2106 Symposium and finally with an improvisation gig atIklectik on 10 September. This piece forms part of the programme for our Forge concert, and I’ll also be playing Scott’s alto flute and electronics piece, Anterior/Interior.

Frost is an instrumental soundscape, using an array of amplified extended techniques on both instruments which blend with and emerge from the electronic sounds. The rhythms are free but coordinated roughly by timings, giving an organic sense of development to the sounds. The flute part uses air sounds, whistle tones and harmonics, with one beautiful changing speed timbral trill at the very end. The pitched material is almost all based on the harmonic series. The guitar part uses an array of percussive techniques to extend the instrument beyond the usual pitched material, creating a dialogue with the electronics.

This piece is very different from the standard flute and guitar piece, and I have no doubt that this will become a regular part of our repertoire. Like Crane’s Erki Nool. It encourages focused listening, and draws the listener in to its atmospheric world.

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