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In the Embers' Path : piano trio

by Elena Kats-Chernin (2020)

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Work Overview

The more I thought about this piece for The Muses' "Fire Dances" project, the more I felt like writing it as if from the tree's perspective, a piece that has anxiety at its core. Even if the fire is raging kilometres away, we all know that a little hot ember flown by the wind can destroy the strongest, biggest, oldest tree if the conditions are hot, windy and dry. My piece starts and ends with unsettling material. At the start it is dramatically angular, like a grotesque dance and it ends with an eery quiet trembling. There is a cello melody in the middle of the piece, it is as if the tree is singing or pleading. Just prior to the last pianissimo section the thick piano texture entails a series of rhythmic sighs on top of the "tree melody" in the strings.

Work Details

Year: 2020

Instrumentation: Violin, cello, piano.

Commission note: Commissioned by ABC Fresh Start Fund.

Written as part of 'Fire Dances', a suite for piano trio, collaboratively written by eight Australian women composers, once from each state and territory. The suite was commissioned through the support of a Fresh Start Grant, funded by ABC Classic during 2020.


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