for orchestra

premiered 1988

University of Southern California New Music Orchestra, Richard Rintoul, conductor



"The recent Capstone release, Black Sea Idyll, is anything but idle, getting right down to business in the opening Intrada by Tom Flaherty, a brilliant three-part curtain-raiser featuring frenetic brass.” [Black Sea Phlharmonic]
– Mark Alburger, 20th Century Music


I wrote Intrada in 1988 for a reading session with the University of Southern California Symphony Orchestra. The session required pieces of no more than three minutes, as around ten pieces were to be read, rehearsed, and performed in one sitting. My interest in tricky rhythm and multiple tempi had to be somewhat kept in check, considering the almost ludicrous time pressure, but there are several tempo modulations in the piece, nonetheless. The listener is occasionally deluded as to what is the beat and what is the syncopation, and often what seems syncopation soon becomes the beat.

The piece begins with a splashy fanfare, which dissolves into progressively slower tempi and more amorphous textures until nearly reaching stasis at the center of the piece. The process is more or less reversed as the piece gathers its forces for an emphatic return to the opening.

Intrada for Ochestra

performed by

The Black Sea Philharmonic

The Black Sea Philharmonic
Radu Ciorei, Music Director

Capstone Records CPS-8648

score excerpt