ATOMIC RANCH (20xx)
For Wind Ensemble
Duration Approximately X:XX
FULL SCORE / 2 (+Picc) 2 2 3 (+Bass) Alto (2), Tenor, Bari / 3 4 3 1 1 / Timp Perc (6)
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This iconic home style is one of the foundations of Mid Century residential architecture and it traces its roots back to the 1930s. The ranch home became emblematic of informal, practical living in a postwar world and it was radical departure from the closed-in, multi-story dwellings of the day. The ranch house was everything a California house should be—it had cross-ventilation, the floor was level with the ground, and with its courtyard and the exterior corridor, it was about sunshine and informal outdoor living.” The ranch house soon came into its own after World War II. With veterans returning home and buying houses, the suburbs exploded. And the large, empty suburban lots were the perfect space for long and low ranches. These casual ranches shared many of the same features: a single-story, open floor plan (a novelty at the time), a large picture window on the front facade to create an indoor/outdoor feeling and an outdoor patio with a large yard for entertaining and playing.
Atomic ranches like the Eichler or Alexander tract homes were built during the peak of the ranch craze from 1945-1970. These ranches often included glass facades on the rear exterior of the house to bring the outside in. Additionally, they could include clerestory windows for a way to provide privacy and a light source, a butterfly or flat roofline for a hint of style, pops of color to keep things fun and a focus on linear features to keep things simple. Together, these features created a home that was the perfect place for families who wanted a modern and livable space. Atomic ranches were the forward-looking homes that embodied a world full of exciting yet practical design and bold choices for better living.