Sonata for two trombones : trombone duet
by Lawrence Whiffin (1983)
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The work is based on a particular technique that I have named Cycles developed soon after joining the Music Department at La Trobe University in 1976. So far there are five pieces using this technique: Cycles-1 for Harpsichord, Cycles-2, also called Cadenza for two pianos, Cycles-4 for the Southbank Ensemble, Cycles-6 for the Flederman Ensemble and now this sonata.
In Cycles, parameters are set up by an initial musical idea which are then represented at every level of the composition. The durations of small and large sections are determined by expanding the rhythm of the underlying motive so that the durations of phrases and subsections remain in the same relative proportions as the underlying motive and as do also the larger sections. The same principle is applied to every other aspect - pitch, contour, register, dynamics and texture, each taking its character from the implications of the motive. The purpose in of the technique is to provide a secure structure for freely developing ideas.
Instrumentation: Tenor trombone, bass trombone.
Duration: 8 min.
First performance: by Pipeline — 1983. North Melbourne Town Hall
Atonal but without a sense of disorientation so often resulting from the absence of traditional harmony. The ‘cycles’ technique aims to confer a feeling of inevitability on the music as it unfolds.
- In the form/style of: Sonatas
Performances of this work
1983: North Melbourne Town Hall. Featuring Pipeline.
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