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Diabolic dance

Sheet Music: Performance Parts

Diabolic dance : for violin & cello / John Peterson.

by John Peterson (1998)

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  • Library Availability: This item is not available from the Australian Music Centre Library
  • Instrumentation: Violin, cello.


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While much of my music is influenced by rock and popular music styles, as well as by other contemporary 'classical' music, I am also very fond of using octatonic scales as source material for various works. In Diabolic Dance, I have used an octatonic scale which has only three transpositions, and the melodies and harmonies of this piece are derived from these so-called Modes of Limited Transposition. By combining these three modes in various ways - both individually and simultaneously - a tension is created and sustained throughout the various sections of the piece. This tension is heightened by the rhythmic interaction between the instruments. This instrumental interplay is sometimes playful, sometimes rigorously aggressive and often quite intricate, with many changes of time signature and heavy use of displaced rhythmic accents creating many 'diabolic' problems for the performers.

The title also refers to the 'diabolus in musica', the medieval name given to the tritone (the augmented fourth), an interval that is emphasised throughout the piece.

Diabolic Dance was written especially for my good friends Christine Myers (violin) and Eleanor Lewis (cello).

Published by: Australian Music Centre — 1 set of 2 performance parts (16p. -- A4 (portrait))

Difficulty: Advanced

Duration: 5 mins, 30 sec.

First performance by Christine Myers, Eleanor Lewis — 15 Aug 98. Queensland Conservatorium Recital Theatre, Southbank, Brisbane

Some of the material for this piece came from a 1991 piece, called 'Dance No. 2' for clarinet and cello.

Typeset edition.

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This work is also available in the following products:

Diabolic dance
Score: Diabolic dance : for violin and cello / John Peterson.

This work also exists as the following versions:
- String orchestra


- Browse other works for Duos: Violin, cello

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