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Timothy C. Takach

Composer / Minneapolis, MN
Member since April 2018
Reviewed as “gorgeous” (Washington Post) and “stunning” (Lawrence Journal-World), the music of Timothy C. Takach has risen fast in the concert world. Applauded for his melodic lines and rich, intriguing harmonies, his compositions have been performed on A Prairie Home Companion, The Boston Pops holiday tour, multiple All-State and festival programs and at venues including the Library of Congress, Kennedy Center and Royal Opera House Muscat. He is a co-creator of the theatrical production of All is Calm: the Christmas Truce of 1914. Takach has frequent national work as a composer-in-residence, presenter, clinician and lecturer.

My Style

There are a couple things that I'm always after when I write. The first is to write something that has multiple access points - tonality, the text, pacing - something to grab onto as this music passes you by. Something to live you wanting to hear it again. I'm also trying to explore our own humanity through my music. I find that by exploring hope, fear, love, loss, pride, strength, power and identity through music can be a powerful thing for performers and audiences alike. My music is an amalgam of all the experiences in my life that have made me who am I. I've internalized all these events that have moved and changed me. When it's my turn to create, I take bits and pieces of those emotions and reactions and combine them into something new that comes from deep within.

Active Projects

And There Are Ghosts

TB, piano
2 · Medium Easy
4 minutes
This piece for developing tenors and basses will be imaginative in it's use of the limited range of a young changed voice. The piano will have it's own character while also supporting the voices with reference pitches and harmonic reinforcement. The text speaks of those who have gone on before us, buoyed by our happiness, giving them energy.
FUNDED
release date
Jul. 31st 2019
$175 / ensemble
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Even in My Time

3-part mixed SAT, piano
2 · Medium Easy
3 minutes
This piece for middle school singers will explore a text about the vast amounts of change we experience in our lifetimes. The beautiful poem by MN Poet Laureate Joyce Sutphen can be used as an access point to history, nature, humanity and beauty. The SAT voicing means that the tenor line will be a smaller range for the changing male voice. The piano part will support the voices.
FUNDED
release date
Aug. 16th 2019
$175 / ensemble
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Featured Compositions

Listen to works by Timothy C. Takach

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Fragile

SATB, hand drum
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Ferocious singing and gorgeous writing collide in “Fragile.” Moving over an incessant drum beat, the singers use percussive text and lyrical lines in contrast. A slow, thoughtful section provides a respite while setting the stage for a powerful closing. Enjoyable to perform and affecting to hear.
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Everything is Made of Light (performed by Roomful of Teeth)

SSAATBBB a cappella
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When Brad Wells, Founder and Artistic Director of GRAMMY winning ensemble Roomful of Teeth, and I were talking about creating a new piece for the group, there were a few specific parameters in play. This piece was written for the specific ranges and talents of the 8 singers in the group. The premiere would take place in The TANK Center for Sonic Arts in Rangely, CO, an old metal water storage tank turned concert hall. The acoustics inside boast up to 40 seconds of reverb. “Everything is Made of Light” is an exploration of sound, of environment, and of texture.
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Aka Hooyo (Mother Tongue)

SATB, percussion
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This was the second piece in Somali that I wrote within a few months. My research brought me to Hadrawi, one of Somalia’s most respected poets. Luckily, Ahmed Ismail Yusuf (who had collaborated with me to create my first piece in Somali), had helped to translate a book of Hadrawi’s poetry, and was an invaluable resource as I dove into Somali culture once again. As an American, I was cautious to not try and imitate Somali musical styles in my work. But as I listened, I couldn’t help but absorb some of the melodic shapes and the rhythmic drive. This piece celebrates the day in 1972 when an official Latin alphabet was adopted for the Somali language. Hadrawi writes about how that simple but momentous action brought people together and invigorated Somali culture.
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Joseph

SATB a cappella
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In a beautifully simple way, this piece explores the thoughts that might have occurred in Joseph’s mind at the birth of Jesus. This new poem is mysterious and thoughtful, and the music allows us space to ponder. Mostly homophonic, the challenges lie in the intriguing harmonies present, which unfold over the course of the piece as more voices join in.
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Many-Splendored Thing

TB, piano
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From the larger work The Longest Nights. Winter takes on a beautiful form here in Paul Gruchow’s writing. The music here paints a different perspective on the season. It’s warm, full and rich, and we are asked to take in this scene with a sense of awe, of wonder that illicits a response, simply, of silence.
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There is No Rose (performed by Lorelei Ensemble)

SSAA div. a cappella
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There is a mystery wrapped up in the birth of Jesus Christ, and in this well-known poem the mystery is traced back to its source, the woman who gave birth to the child, Mary. The rose is an apt metaphor for the birth, it's petals folded layer upon layer, provoking us to wonder what's at the core, what's being protected until it blooms. In this setting, the soprano duet provides a backdrop against which the strophic musical material unfolds (or blooms), at first in once voice, then two, three, four, and finally five. The harmonic language at first is strange and mysterious, but through repetition becomes familiar and comforting.

Testimonials

Lee Nelson
Sep 18, 2018
Tim is an important compositional voice in the 21st century. He chooses interesting and often unknown texts that speak directly to the human experience. It is obvious that he is a performer himself because he approaches his music with great insight into what the human voice is capable, regardless of age, resulting in music that is accessible, creative and interesting. Tim also has an innate sense of form and overall pacing within his compositions. There is always something creative and interesting happening. I especially love his use of instruments in many of his works which adds wonderful colors to his imaginative music. We are fortunate to have Tim's music and artistry in today's world that sorely needs beauty and thoughtfulness. It will undoubtedly be performed for years to come.
Alan Denney
Apr 21, 2018
In my never-ending quest for relevant, challenging and meaningful choral repertoire for my choirs, I was introduced to the music of Tim Takach. I have found Tim's music to be extremely well-written, poignant and touching. In an enlightening fashion, Tim's texts carry potency and relevance. Consequently, the phrases are then shaped with such finesse, it is almost as if his music was divinely meant for it. I have found his writing to be exquisitely and carefully constructed. If you are looking for new and challenging repertoire -- something fresh and wonderfully crafted for your choral ensemble -- you just found it.
Paul
Apr 16, 2018
I've known Tim and his music for a long time. His works have a particular sound all their own, and they never get old or trite or anything but genuine. Tim's also an extremely effective composer technically, capable of writing incredibly effective music for each ensemble. He's written music for many consortiums as well, and amazingly, those pieces sound like they were just as uniquely tailored as of his other works. He's a born collaborator and does a wonderful job of integrating new ideas and considerations into his clear vision of each piece. Tim's a win in all ways.
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