ELEGIA STRAVAGANTE, DUO CONCERTANTE FOR SOLO VIOLIN, SOLO CELLO AND ORCHESTRA op.686 (February 2017)

A double concerto for soloists and orchestra (adapted from the Piano Trio no. 3, composed 2014)
Published by: highbridge music
Commissioned by: Benedict Kloeckner
Instrumentation:

solo violin, solo cello, 1 flute, 1 ob, 2 clars, 2 bsns, 4 hns, 1 pc, strings


[Key to Abbreviations]
Duration: 16 mins
First Performance: Cadogan Hall Sept.7th 2017. Benedict Kloeckner cello and Nicolas Dautricourt violin with The Royal Philharmonic Orchestra conducted by the composer

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Movements

  • 1: Andante (rapsodico)

    On the afternoon of October 28th 2013, after rehearsing with the cellist Benedict Kloeckner, we talked for a while about double concertos and pondered as to how one might create one. Shortly afterwards I slept for a while and dreamed up first a septuplet 'trill-flourish' motif in C major and then an ensuing 'upward-sweeping' melodic fragment of a minor 2nd and major 7th, both of which I immediately wrote down. I felt at once that this was material ideally suited for violin and cello with piano or orchestral accompaniment and wrote what was to be the first movement as a rhapsodic Andante.

  • 2:

    I then felt I needed some sort of 6/8 allegro idea as a bridge passage and worked at several until I suddenly remembered a sort of 'jazz fugue' from an early work called 'Movement for orchestra' which I'd once had played by The Royal Philharmonic Orchestra. It seemed to fit perfectly here, and with some revision formed a perfect link between the Andante (rapsodico) and the next section Tragico.

  • 3: Tragico

    Tragico begins with the upward-sweeping motif, but now very slow and sad. This forms a bridge and modulation to E-minor where the cello enunciates the theme 'Parting', a fragment I had dreamt up in the summer whilst preparing repertoire for Vladimir Ashkenazy's album of my piano works. But here the 'Parting' theme develops greatly, leading quite rapidly and unexpectedly to a colossal climax, then falling down to a paused low chord of C major which begins section 4.

  • 4: Grave, molto espressivo

    Grave molto espressivo is a deeply-felt cadenza for violin and cello which then starts to accelerate (piu mosso) towards section 5

  • 5: Allegro furioso

    Cello and violin play in unison at the 16th against a constantly turning orchestral phrase using the ever-present 'trill-flourish' motif. Martial and tragic hints and twists are now overcome by massive upward scalic movements seeking a major key and suddenly triumphantly asserting that of E major.

  • 6: Giojoso, estatico

    Giojoso, ecstatico transforms and inverts the minor 'upward-sweeping' theme into a major 'hymn of triumph' punctuated with huge piano chords. The energy of this is so great however that it must inevitably sink down to regain stability and a hardly-moving harmonic 'thirds duplet' grows gradually quieter and slower until it sinks away to nothing without resolution.

  • 7: Andante, come prima

    The music of the opening returns but this time in the key to which the piece has ascended - E major, the final bar picking up the 'trill-flourish' motif and giving the whole work a resolution with a very short coda on violin and cello sounding alone - yet perhaps finally together.

Performances

7th September 2017 Howard Blake, composer/pianist/conductor with Benedict Kloeckner (cello), Nicolas D'Autricourt (violin) and Sophie Witte (soprano), The Cadogan Hall,Chelsea,London, September 7th. 2017, 7.30pm

HOWARD BLAKE CONDUCTS AN EVENING OF HIS MUSIC

with The Royal Philharmonic Orchestra and soloists

at The Cadogan Hall

September 7th 2017 at 7.30pm

 

SLEEPWALKING  opus 505  for soprano vocalise and full string orchestra

Solo soprano: Sophie Witte. 

Tranquillo - Allegretto - Maestoso- Vivace – Adagio – Allegro  Furioso – Tranquillo

 

CONCERTO  FOR PIANO AND ORCHESTRA opus 412

Solo piano: Sasha Grynyuk

Tranquillo, Allegro con brio - Andante espressivo - Vivace

 

INTERVAL

 

DIVERSIONS  FOR  CELLO AND ORCHESTRA,  opus 337

Solo cello; Benedict Kloeckner    23 minutes

Prelude;  Scherzo;  March;  Waltz;  Aria;  Serenade;  Sarabande & Cadenza;  Finale  

 

ELEGIA STRAVAGANTE (DUO CONCERTANTE), for violin, cello and orchestra premiere performance  16 minutes

Solo Violin: Nicolas Dautricourt ,  Solo Cello: Benedict  Kloeckner

Orchestration: 1 Flute, 1 Oboe, 2 clarinets, 2 bassoons, 4 horns, 1 percussion (cymbals and tam-tam) and strings

Andante (rapsodico) - Scherzo malizioso - Tragico  - Grave, molto espressivo –Allegro furioso -  Giojoso, estatico - Andante, come prima

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possible postlude:  'WALKING IN THE AIR'

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