for solo alto flute
As I have always maintained, the best way to learn about an instrument is to write an unaccompanied piece for it! The piece consists of a set of fragments that are my way of exploring the colors of the alto flute. An added bonus for me was that my friend and colleague, Leanne Hampton, for whom I wrote the piece, was game for pretty much anything, resulting in the inclusion of a limited smattering of extended techniques as well.
The name, Gold Obsidian, itself comes from the phenomenon where the glasses surface of the volcanic glass known as obsidian is mixed with gold ore from a nearby deposit as the obsidian cools (aventurescence). The result is either a fracturing effect caused by veins of gold stringing through the rock, or a delightful sheen of dust trapped just below the surface that is typically only visible when the light catches it at the correct angle.