LARGE CHAMBER ENSEMBLE - Continental Divide (1996)

Duration - 11:00

flute (piccolo), oboe (english horn), clarinet (bass clarinet), bassoon (contrabassoon); horn, trumpet, trombone, tuba, piano (celesta), electric guitar, percussion; 2 violin, viola, violoncello, doublebass/electric bass

Commissioned by the Pittsburgh New Music Ensemble, Edwin London, conductor

The high point of the evening was the premiere of Continental Divide, a clever, jazz-influenced confection by Derek Bermel - winner of PNME’s 1996 Harvey Gaul Composition Contest. It was fun, fanciful, and brief.
— The Pittsburgh Post Gazette 
Guest conductor Derek Bermel presided over appealing works in a number of styles. Bermel’s Continental Divide makes no claims to monumentalism, instead shooting musical accents off long notes and exuding jazzy energy. Hints of lyricism peek through the textures, as do passages of gleeful cacophony. The composer led a crisp account of his inviting nine-minute piece.
— The Cleveland Plain Dealer