for double wind quintet (decet)


18 minutes


2 flutes, 2 oboes, 2 clarinets,
2 horns, 2 bassoons

Year Composed:  


Written For:            
The Hindemith Quintet

Commissioned By:

Hochschule für Musik, Mainz, with kind support from the Annie Eisler Lehmenn Stiftung

Premiere Performance:

6 September 2011
Mainz, Germany
Hindemith-Quintet and students from the Hochschule für Musik


1. Keep moving 
2. Gutter People
3. Getting busy
4. Keeping busy

Program Notes:

Tetris – for double wind quintet, was written during fall 2009 in New York City. The city, with its fast pace of life, neurotic flowing, continuous stream of people, traffic and information serves as the inspiration for this piece. 

Watching from the side, the fast-moving people appeared to me like robots controlled by an above force, mechanically moving from one place to another, fighting against the clock, against the part of the brain that says  – “Relax!” and against each other. Survival in a jungle of brick walls and tall buildings. 

It seemed to me that people could not enjoy a full basic inhale exhale process. Good breathing consumes too much time… people were constantly looking for ways to juggle between many things at the same time.  They seemed to me like Tetris players who try to match the bricks to a certain pattern, constantly in demand to increase speed. Though to the stranger this pace of life looks fascinating and exciting, I felt that deep inside things look a bit different, quite tragic.


The piece consists of four connected sections: Keep moving, Gutter People, Getting busy and Keeping busy. The first and fourth movements refer to the continuous, breathless pace of life. The third movement is a short satire about restless people. The second movement is inspired by the thousands of people who spend all their life in the cellar of a restaurant or shop after immigrating from far away, only to serve the ever-hurrying people above them.

Tetris was written for the Hindemith Woodwind Quintet. It was commissioned by the Hochschule für Musik, Mainz with kind support from the Annie Eisler Lehmenn Stiftung.


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Lior Navok, composer | contemporary music composer | new music composer