Composed by Derek Charke
for Flute Quartet
Published by Canadian Music Centre
Duration: ca. 4 minutes
Includes score and parts
4 Flutes (Amplification is highly recommended)
Raga Das is a companion work to my earlier quartets – Raga Cha and Raga Saat. It is not based on an authentic Raga, but rather attempts to emulate the sound world through the use of various extended flute techniques. It is repetitive and meditative in character.
Raga Das is also the shortest of the three works, coming in at a little over four minutes in length.
Raga Das is in 10/8 (5/4) time. 'Das' is the English translation of the number ten in Hindi.
Similar to the other Raga flute quartets, Raga Das plays with several polyrhythmic patterns that define the rhythmic flavour of the piece. At any time there are at least two, if not three or four, distinctive subdividisons of the 10/8 time. Flutes 3 and 4 act an isorhythmic talea, perhaps imitative of the tabla. While the other two voices provide melodic figurations. Many sounds are created with a technique whereby the flutist must enunicate the word 'cha' to produce the desired 'toneless' and rough sounding effect.
A traingle note-head indicates a “toneless” attack. Blow across the tone-hole (not into the tone hole as you normally would while producing a harsh “CHA” sound.
A square note-head indicates a note to be sung.