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Programme Notes

In 1982 I wrote a solo violin piece, Winter Journey, based on Schubert's Winterreise, which I later arranged for solo viola. This version was premiered by Sarah-Jane Bradley in February 2000. Her insightful playing of that piece was very much in my mind when I came to write this present concertino - which is dedicated to her, and which also, in its second theme, makes an explicit reference to the first song of Schubert's song cycle. The title Winter Remembered is from a poem by the American poet John Crowe Ransom and of course makes a nice allusion to Winterreise as well as being not too far distant in its subject matter from the Wilhelm Müller poems that Schubert set. Winter Remembered is a single movement lasting just under fifteen minutes and is a combination of sonata and variation form. The latter is evident in the sectional construction of the piece, which has a slow central section, a cadenza and, after passing through many different moods, a tranquil coda. Originally for viola and strings, Winter Remembered was jointly commissioned by the Deal and Presteigne Festivals with funds provided by South East Arts. This arrangement for viola and piano was written in 2003 at the request of Sarah-Jane Bradley for her to play with her husband, pianist Jonathan Ayerst.

© David Matthews

Winter Remembered

Erin Arts Centre (Port Erin, Isle of Man, United Kingdom)

Jonathan Ayerst/Sarah-Jane Bradley