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Freaky Dancer

For vibraphone and guitar quartet

2003, 7 minutes

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“Freaky Dancer,” heavily inspired by Indonesian gamelan music, is one of two tracks on the record to feature Scottish

percussionist Colin Currie. “That piece has a hypnotic sonic quality and an amazing energy,” says Kanengiser. “Once it

hits the fast section, about three minutes in, it just takes off. It has a minimal quality to it, but it also has an incredible


Bill Kanengiser, Los Angeles Guitar Quartet

Performance Notes

A colleague once said that every composer who has a child writes a piece about toys at some stage so I'm only too glad to

support his theory.  Freaky Dancer is about an imaginary toy that behaves normally when on but then perhaps has a life of

it's own once it is switched off or closed.  So in the opening of the piece (tempo I) the players imitate a music box ballerina,

which then in tempo II starts to have a bit of fun.  The piece alternates between these two tempi throughout as if one is

tempted to lift the box just to check nothing untoward is occurring.  Maybe it is. . .

Key Performances

World Premiere


Venue: Freud Playhouse, UCLA, Los Angeles, USA

Performers: LA Guitar Quartet; Colin Currie, percussion



Venue: Sanders Theatre, Harvard University, Boston, USA

Performers: LA Guitar Quartet; Colin Currie, percussion

National Premiere


Venue: Museo de Antropologia de Xalapa, Xalapa, Mexico

Conductor: Gustavo Castro

Performers: Orquesta de Guitarras de la FMUV / Eduardo Téllez Alonzo, vibraphone