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Line spun with stars : trio for flute, cello and piano

by Jennifer Fowler (1983, this version: 2006)

Score Sample

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This sample is from the Piano Trios version of this work

Audio Sample

Performance by Laura Chislett, L. Szaloo, Daniel Herscovitch from the CD Works of Jennifer Fowler. Transcriptions Disc 4

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Lines Spun


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Work Overview

In view of the vast choice of notes which one could use in a particular piece, I like to set myself some limits: in this piece I have limited myself to drawing a line; i.e. the piece is almost entirely monophonic (one note at a time).

Some episodes of the piece have a characteristic pattern: a cluster of notes which revolve around a central note; a kind of "star" pattern, in which the central note exerts a gravitational pull on the surrounding notes. Leading from one "star" pattern to another are episodes which have a strong sense of direction, or line (hence another sense of the word "line" in the title). The line pulls the stream of notes downwards or upwards, until encountering another star pattern.

The main preoccupation of the piece is concerned with movement. An impetus is generated which propels the piece either towards faster movement, until it reaches a burst of rapid notes; or towards slower movement, when it reaches a passage of long notes. The rate of movement is constantly changing within each cycle. As well as that, the cycles themselves vary in length and are also expanding and contracting.

Because this preoccupation with rhythmic expansion and contraction is so important in the piece, it will help to explain the decision I mentioned earlier. The piece is limited to a monophonic line, so that by a single stream of notes the patterns of tempo and direction can be etched out more distinctly.

Work Details

Year: 1983, this version: 2006

Instrumentation: Flute or violin, cello, piano.

Duration: 12 min.

Difficulty: Advanced

First performance: by Ensemble Australis — 16 Mar 87. Lauderdale House, London, UK

Performances of this work

30 Jan 2016: at Music of the Spheres (St Cuthbert’s Parish Church (West Hampstead, UK)). Featuring Thalassa Ensemble.

31 Aug 91: Joseph Post Auditorium, Sydney Conservatorium, Sydney. Featuring Symeron.

7 Apr 91: Recital Hall, Georgia State University, Atlanta, USA. Featuring Thamyris Ensemble.

19 Mar 91: Birmingham, UK

23 Oct 89: Turner Simms Concert Hall, Southampton University, Southampton, UK

24 Apr 87: Trinity Chamber Concerts, Oakland, California, USA. Featuring Sonus Lyricus Ensemble.

16 Mar 87: Lauderdale House, London, UK. Featuring Ensemble Australis.

8 Sep 85: The Downer Room Australia House, London UK. Featuring Jamie Cock, Lewis Mitchell, Anthea Cottee.

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