Three part Chaconne

(1989)

by Colin Matthews

Description
string trio and piano left hand
Duration
9
Genres
Mixed Chamber Ensemble
Instrumentation
Commission
Commissioned by the Nash Ensemble for their 25th anniversary seasonwith financial assistance from IBM UK ltd
First Performance
24.2.90, Wigmore Hall, London: Nash Ensemble
Availability

A4 facsimile score (fp) 0-571-55576-4, piano score and parts (fp) 0-571-55577-2 on sale

Programme Notes
Colin Matthews Three-part Chaconne for string trio and piano left-hand In the first part the strings spell out a version of the chaconne (a continuously repeated motive) in octaves while the piano plays improvisatorily against them; the second (and longest) part is a slow melodic crescendo and decrescendo in which the chaconne theme passes from instrument to instrument: the piano does not enter until the mid-point; in the third part the piano turns its first-part improvisation into a toccata-like presto. The combination of string trio with the left hand only of the piano was not specifically influence by a one-handed pianist (although hearing Leon Fleisher in recent years has been inspiring – he gave the first American performance of this piece in Washington in March 1992) but is, rather, a solution to the notorious difficulty of achieving balance within the ensemble – although I am very aware that a number of composers have solved that particular problem with ease! Three-part Chaconne lasts around nine minutes, and was commissioned by the Nash Ensemble with financial assistance from IBM UK Ltd. Colin Matthews

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