Iskra is a Russian word that means "spark," as in to ignite. The work is the result of a single "ignition," or idea. There is no overarching meta structure or precompositional architecture. The piece is the result of day-to-day work with no formal procedure in mind, as in automatic writing or painting. This enables a certain freedom from that which constricts, thereby allowing for the discovery of new sounds and ideas. The form is variable, growing as seems natural within the moments of creation. In the case of my writing, forms, as a rule, are never repeated and there are no hierarchical notions of motif, melody, or harmony. That is not to say that those elements do not exist, they are free to surface in their own unique way with no specific mechanism of control.
Iskra was commissioned and is dedicated to the Quasar Saxophone Quartet. It was premiered May 27 2004 in Montréal.