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Ten preludes for piano : Ten piano solos written between 1978 and 2006

by Richard Vella

Work Overview

These solos explore various approaches to texture, the convergence of genres, harmonic and rhythmic organisation. Harmonic organistion ranges from the use of tonality, atonality, modality and set theory to symmetrical and non-symmetrical harmonic fields. Rhythmic organisation includes the use of metric and non metric time, polyrhythm, rhythmic stratification involving independent layers, and free rhythm. The textures of many of the works explore register counterpoint, spatial expansion and contraction of registers, and simultaneity. Aesthetically these preludes combine diverse genres into hybrid forms.

Work Details

Instrumentation: Piano.

Duration: 20 min.

Difficulty: Advanced — The solos range in difficulty from medium to advanced.

Contents note: Piano Prelude #1 (from the film 'Renzo Piano: piece by piece') -- Piano Prelude #2 (from 'Memory Pieces') -- Piano Prelude #3 -- Piano Prelude #4 ('Peace' from 'A to Z of Spiritual Music') -- Piano Prelude #5 ('Mazurka Europa!' from 'Memory Pieces') -- Piano Prelude #6 (from the film 'Parlands') -- Piano Prelude #7 (based on 'River' (Guitar prelude #2)) -- Piano Prelude #8 (based on 'Epiphany' from 'A to Z of Spiritual Music') -- Piano Prelude #9 (arrangement of Duo No.2 for Cello and Piano) -- Piano Prelude #10 (from 'Convergence' Part One).

Dedication note: Dedicated to Michael Kieran Harvey, Colin Spiers. Dedicated to Colin Spiers and Michael Kieran Harvey in appreciation of their friendship and musicianship.

The composer notes:
The solos are a documentation of the composer's music vocabulary written for commissions and film scores between1978 to 2006. They are either transcriptions or arrangements exploring their pianistic potential.

The composer notes the following styles, genres, influences, etc associated with this work:
The solos mix various genres into hybridised forms. They are informed by neo-romanticism, minimalism, post serialism techniques, moment form, indeterminacy, improvisation, repetition music, collage, and simultaneity.

Revised 2018.


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