Donaxis quartet : for oboe, clarinet, bassoon and piano
by Charles Bodman Rae (1987)
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Library shelf no. CD 2344 [Available for loan]
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Donaxis Quartet is in five movements with cyclic thematic connections between them. The first is slow, and sets out the harmonic and melodic ideas that grow from the axis point on middle C. The second is slightly faster and presents duos for the three wind instruments and piano. The third is faster still and functions as a kind of scherzo-rondo, for the three wind instruments without piano. The fourth reprises material from the first, second and third, and takes us to the climax of the work in an expansive ad libitum section dominated by woodwind trills. The fifth and final movement presents an old gaelic melody identified with the song Ca the Yowes by Robert Burns. The harmonic treatment of the melody is original and is not an arrangement of the song. An unexpected twist to the melody in its third 'verse' brings the work full circle to end with the same tritone axis (C to F sharp) with which it began.
Instrumentation: Oboe, clarinet, bassoon, piano.
Duration: 24 min.
Contents note: I. Adagio -- II. Andante -- III. Allegro -- IV. Adagio - Andante - Allegro - Ad libitum -- V. Adagio.
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