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Concertino for piano and strings (piano with string orchestra)

by Colin Spiers (2018)

Selected products featuring this work — Display all products (2 more)

Display all products featuring this work (2 more)  

Work Overview

The Concertino for Piano and Strings is essentially a work about conflict and resolution, and was initially 'inspired' by the experience of years of dull university meetings. The notion that music for a soloist and an ensemble pits the two against each other is a universal one, and is here explored in the most obvious and basic manner on the micro level (within each of the three connected movements), the macro level (the journey of the work as a whole) and stylistically (through the frequent abrupt placement of tonal and atonal chordal passages; simple, transparent and complex dense cluster textures; and aggressive and placid expressive writing).

The first movement ("Statements") presents the soloist and orchestra as metaphors for individual and group mentalities, each vying to present their contrasting points of view as the only legitimate one. This degenerates into the chaos of the second movement ("Arguments"), where things become in turn hysterical, confrontational and insulting, before some sort of rapprochement is achieved in the more straightforward and mostly gentle music of the final movement ("Agreements"). Here the structure (a set of eight variations without a theme) reflects a process of reconciliation, which, nevertheless, appears to be merely transitory, to which the mocking grandeur of the closing pages attests.

Work Details

Year: 2018

Instrumentation: Solo piano, string orchestra.

Duration: 20 min.

Difficulty: Advanced — Requires fluent technique and a good sense of rhythm.

Contents note: I. Statements -- II. Arguments -- III. Agreements.

Dedication note: Dedicated to Michael Kieran Harvey

First performance: by Michael Kieran Harvey, Simon Reade at FORUM (The Farrall Centre) on 31 May 2019

The composer notes the following styles, genres, influences, etc associated with this work:
Post-modern ironic style. The soloist represents the individual in conflict with the herd mentality of the group (the string ensemble)


Performances of this work

31 May 2019: at FORUM (The Farrall Centre). Featuring Michael Kieran Harvey, Simon Reade.

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