Large Ensembles (6 or more)
The title,Sailing to Byzantium, is that of a Yeats poem, a reflection on ageing and the search for permanance.
This piece came about a few years after the conclusion of my graduate studies in Buffalo and was written for wonderful musicians a little older than myself who had become friends during these years. The Camanae Quartet, Marie Yadzinski,Susan Harbison, violins, Diane Williams, viola, and Mary Sue Wells, cello had asked me to write a string quartet for them. After some thought I asked if it could include a piano (me), a clarinet (Ed Yadzinski, then married to Marie) and a percussion, my fellow UB grad student, Bruce Penner.
This piece shares the canonic same technique as all in due time (1973). The canons are first stated at very close time intervals and gradually move away from each other, revealing at their sixth repetition the "correct" solution, which in this case is a harmonization of "America", broken into six phrases. The original version, created at Mills College, where I had a Ford Foundation residency, was for multi-track organ.
In this short piece the cortege, played by the trumpet, English Horn,bassoon, trombone and tuba is interrupted by "shoutouts", some of them fragments by Stravinsky from Petrouchka,Valse pour les enfants,The Rake's Progress and Requiem Canticles. The piece concludes with a flute solo.
The title Social Etudes refers to the interaction of the players who begin all together on one instrument and eventually move to six individual setups. It also refers to the differing ways the notattion binds them together or separates them. The conductor's role also varies throughout the piece, at times a strict regulator of activity and at others a very general guide.
The score is published by Editions Svitzer.
To Jenter (Two Girls) is two pieces for 15 solo strings based on Norwegian folk songs;
1) Astri, mi Astri (Astrid,my Astrid)
2) Jeg heter Anna, Knutsdottir (My name is Anna,Knut's daughter)
The first piece is dedicated to my sister, Astrid, the second to my niece, Anna
text by Walt Whitman
18.104.22.168./0.1.1.0/perc/2 pianos/solo Soprano/solo Baritone/22.214.171.124.0
Summer Harbor with Circle Dance was commissioned for the 2nd St. Petersburg Festival "The Contemporary Past" and was premiered there in 2010. It is scored for an ensemble of 10 players; WW Quintet and String Quintet (STQ + Double Bass).