The definition of a machine is an apparatus having several parts, each with a definite function and together performing a particular task. As I began to consider this new piece for four gayageums, I found myself comparing the role of musicians to that of the cogs, wheels and gears that comprise some organic machine. If you have ever seen the inner workings of a mechanical watch, you have experienced the beauty that exists in intricacy: gears and cogs moving against each other as each part serves its unique function. Only when each part is perfectly in sync with the others is the result properly produced. Much like the finely-tuned parts of that watch, the four musicians in this piece play their own distinct music. Each part is stacked on the others, creating layers of sound and resulting in something that is far more than the sum of its parts.
A Machine of Silk and Wood
was commissioned by the Kim Byung-ho Sanjo School, and is dedicated to the members of this group.