33(+EH)33 4331 perc timp str
Breathless is part of Ron's larger "magnum opus" which also includes Flowers and Stones (1985) and Pelican Song (2007). The entirety is bound by a mysterious trance-inducing ostinato, heard here primarily in the marimba.
The piece begins with a bang — and then it's off and running, a single through-composed movement with assorted changes of pace and texture along the way. The unmitigated forward motion is ultimately resolved in a static "chord", held for as long as the individual players are able within a single breath — until they all are, in the end, "breathless".
"Breathless" was commissioned by conductor Alan Remington and the Orange Coast College Symphony, which gave it's premiere on May 5, 2002