Merak

The word “Merak” (meh-rak) is a Serbian word that means: a feeling of bliss and the sense of oneness with the universe that comes from the simplest of pleasures. This piece of music started out as a compositional challenge. I asked people on my social media to give me any note from the chromatic scale. The challenge was to take the notes in the order I received them and turn it into the top line, melody, of a piece of music. The soprano saxophone has these notes: notes I did not choose, but rhythms I did choose. I created every other part as I saw fit. And the unusual instrumentation of vocalists and saxophones came to me with wonder and curiosity. My only hope is that the sounds created with all of the interacting parts and the texture of voice and saxophone portray the meaning of this Serbian word, a word that has no direct translation, as best as possible.