During September and OctoberÂ in addition to firstÂ performances ofÂ three brand-new pieces thereâ€™ll be aÂ sort-of first performance of a fourth.Â ThisÂ â€˜sort-ofâ€™ premiereÂ (at Syracuse University, September 15th 8:00 PM)Â is of my SerenadeÂ for Violin and Organ.Â
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At times composers canâ€™t accurately predictÂ what will spark performer interest.Â I know itâ€™s a surprise to meÂ sometimes: More than once when Iâ€™ve written a piece just for myself to play thatÂ caught on with other pianists,Â developingÂ a hardyÂ after-life.Â Â
Serenade was composed in one day in March of 2006, originally for piano.Â AÂ close relativeâ€™s serious illness had me brooding, so I sat down to write musicÂ she would enjoy hearing.Â Â She loves the kind of lush jazz chords typical of â€˜40s big-bands, so I began with the same major-7th chord asÂ David Raksin used inÂ â€œLauraâ€Â and progressed from there inÂ sustained quiet affect.Â Â Â The resultingÂ five-minute movement is something of a lone-wolfÂ — it staysÂ in one meter throughout with aÂ circular melody that never resolves;Â andÂ the music begins and ends almost without definition.Â BecauseÂ its background rhythm is a consistentÂ slow syncopation, I included it on the Prestidigitations CD asÂ coda.
When the Syracuse concert came up,Â the organ professor wanted to play, so IÂ suggested he adapt Serenade ( a melody withÂ worked-out harmonic support ) and sent along the music.Â Â He really liked it and slated the transcribed version for the mid-September concert (Iâ€™ll be there).
The music is mine, but this version is his.Â Vested interest is spread, and anticipated pleasure in the offering is shared.Â (A report on the transcriptionÂ will follow later this month.)Â