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The Shuffle Series

On this page, Shuffle refers to a series of pieces that, so far, have been composed for solo instrumentalists. The Shuffle idea might be thought of as a chamber version of The Coma Concerto idea.


Each Shuffle is a unique piece for live performer and pre-recorded music.


The pre-recorded music consists of multiple tracks to be played back on any device that has a Shuffle Mode:

  • A computer (Ex: iTunes)

  • A smart phone (Ex: iPhone)

  • Certain CD players (with the aforementioned tracks burned separately onto the CD)

The pre-recorded music is created in a direct collaboration between the composer and performer:

Step 1: The performer demonstrates special tones/timbres and gestures they view as distinct and special parts of their personal sonic vocabulary.

Step 2: Based on those demonstrations, the composer writes gestures, phrases and sections and gives those to the performer.

Step 3: The performer records the multiple segments of music and sends them to the composer.

Step 4: The composer edits the recorded segments (often with minimal signal processing) and creates multiple short recordings.

Step 5: The recordings are assembled into a playlist.

Step 6: The performer plays live over the playlist. The playlist is to be played back in Shuffle Mode, (which will change the order of the tracks) insuring a significant difference from performance to performance.

Therefore, the live performance is an improvised* response to the tracks.

  • The use of amplification and live signal processing is at the performer’s discretion.


The live performer may either

  • Rely upon their skills to improvise freely in response to the randomized playback.

  • *Study each track for information that may shape their improvisational strategy:

    • Tonal center or pitch content, if relevant

    • Rhythmic ideas, Tempo, Metric ideas, if relevant

    • Gesture


Additional Performance Options

  • The performer may begin playing before the recorded material starts

  • The performer may continue to play after the recorded material ends

  • The performer may omit certain pre-recorded tracks in creating the playlist, inspired by a perceived potential regarding 

    • Pacing of events

    • Focusing of the possibilities

Current Shuffles

Shuffle for Electric Guitar

Shuffle for Juho

Shuffle for Zac

Interested in your own Shuffle? contact

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