Weave : for six players
by Elliott Gyger (2018)
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Written for a concert by the MCM New Music Studio celebrating my 50th birthday year, Weave is among other things a reflection on the passing of time. Its starting point is a short work, Strands, which I wrote thirty years earlier. Apparently a mysterious miniature eschewing all the virtuosity and individualistic potential inherent in the piano trio medium, Strands is also a strictly worked-out compositional study: the entire piece comprises four statements of a melody, progressively doubled at wider and wider intervals, but with many notes omitted and others prolonged so that the unison line of the opening unravels and blurs into a resonant space.
The first three minutes of Weave are an exact transcription of Strands for a wilfully heterogeneous sextet, whose bright colour contrasts are held in check by the austerity of the process. The work continues, however, with fifteen more variations on the melody at a much faster tempo - treated almost as strictly as in the original, but finding room for elaborately fragmented textures, featuring each of the instruments in turn in overlapping solos. The final section is one further variation, this time much slower than the original, and presented as a series of fifty bell-like chords, each scored for a different subset of the ensemble.
Instrumentation: Piccolo/alto flute, alto saxophone, trumpet in C, trombone, percussion (1 player), double bass.
Duration: 10 min.
Commission note: Written for the MCM New Music Studio
First performance: by Melbourne Conservatorium of Music (MCM) New Music Ensemble, Elliott Gyger — 21 May 18. Salon, Melbourne Recital Centre
Performances of this work
21 May 18: Salon, Melbourne Recital Centre. Featuring Melbourne Conservatorium of Music (MCM) New Music Ensemble, Elliott Gyger.
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