for solo piano(2015)
|Movements||I. After Chopin|
IV. Crab Motion
|Commission||Commissioned by the Vermont Music Teachers' Association|
|Premiere||October 2, 2015; Burlington, VT; Brian Connelly, piano|
My set of four piano preludes were written for pianist Brian Connelly and commissioned by the Vermont Music Teachers’ Association. Having grown up in Vermont and having studied piano and composition with Arlene Cleary, a long time member of VMTA, I had always wanted to write a set of piano preludes.
The first prelude was influenced by Chopin’s Op. 28 #18 F minor prelude. I have always thought of this Chopin Prelude as wonderfully strange, almost atonal, and rhythmically very free, never quite cadencing until the end. My prelude is a modern take on some of these qualities. The second prelude’s title, ‘Turning’, refers to the chromatic ostinato pattern with which the piece begins – constantly turning back on itself as it moves forward. The third prelude ‘Chant’ utilizes quotes from Gregorian chant presented in a more modern guise. The fourth prelude, ‘Crab Motion’, mimics an inward collapsing motion with the fingers as this pattern moves up and down the keyboard.
A huge thank you to Patricia Bergeron, Susan Nicholas, VMTA, and Brian Connelly for making this piece of music possible.
- Pierre Jalbert