This advanced piece for tuba soloist and wind ensemble blends several different themes in the 8 conversations which can be performed in any combination of the 8 themes. Considered the most difficult piece ever written by the composer, it provides varied challenges for each of the "Conversations."
This major work utilizes musical themes from Korea, Japan, Taiwan, and China in a delightful combination of sounds. It is believed by many Ethnic-sociologists that all of the asian peoples originated from China which, in Chinese means "Middle Kingdom." The songs utilized are "Ariang" from Korea, "Sakura" from Japan, "Jung ai shiren" from Taiwan, and "Rain" from Japan. An unusual section at letter "D" which emulates the sound of train travel; which is one of the major means of transportation in Asia. There is a large percussion part with solo’s that will be appreciated by percussionists. There is an aleatoric section as well as utilization of the human voice.
This original piece is based on the memories of the composer's visit to the Cascade mountain range as a young Sailor on liberty from his ship moored in Tacoma, Washington. The piece is written in three sections: Skagit Mountain, Lake Helena, and Bridge of the Gods. It closes with a recapitulation of the first theme.
Because President Tyler declined to provide government funding for Heinrich’s compositional endeavors after he dedicated the “Texas & Oregon Grand March” to the president, Heinrich, in response, published the satirical mock-heroic “Tyler's Grand Veto Quick Step.”