Variations in a serious black dress
by Elena Kats-Chernin (1995)
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This piece is conceived as a set of variations on two contrasting
themes-both stated successfively at the very beginning. Theme 1
is a melody employing a limited number of pitches. Theme 2
follows as a cycle of 13 chords with A minor as the harmonic
centre. These chords incidentally also build the basis of
"Chamber of Horrors" for harp solo. In the first two variations
these elements are treated simultaneously, whereas starting form
the third they get more and more detached from one another. The
means of varying the material are derived from aspects of rhythm,
register and texture, while the melodic/harmonic shape remains
static almost throughout.
The piece exists in a recording by Stephanie McCallum on Portrait CD "Clocks" (ABC Classics).
Some years ago a Brisbane based group TOPOLOGY made a recording of them playing an arrangement of this piece made by Robert Davidson.
Duration: 10-11 min.
- In the form/style of: Variations
Performances of this work
1994: Sydney Town Hall, at a concert of composers playing their own pieces. Featuring Elena Kats-Chernin.
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