Replay by Charlotte Bray for Violin, Viola, Cello and Piano.

This work was composed in 2010 and first performed on 30 June 2011 at Parabola Arts Centre, Cheltenham, UK, by Alexandra Wood (violin), Cian O’Duill (viola), Robin Michael (cello) and Huw Watkins (piano).

Commissioned by the Royal Philharmonic Society as a result of the 2010 Susan Bradshaw Composers’ Fund Prize.

Programme Notes

As if engaged in an intimate conversation, agile cantabile lines are woven quietly together to form the opening of Replay. This is the first of three contrasting musical identities that the piece travels through before returning to a variation of each. The music flows constantly between these idiosyncrasies.

The structure was prompted by images of spherical trigonometry. The second section is dark, rough and earthy. A low, rumbling piano line sits under the strings that, in rhythmic unison, build the tension with syncopated patterns. Repetitive staccato gestures in the piano cut through, joined shortly after by the cello playing pizzicato.

While these elements continue underneath, a tender solo violin line takes centre stage, preceding an intense third section, extreme in terms of register and dynamic, made up of syncopated riff-based variations. Gradually falling back into the weightless graceful material of the opening, the replay begins, with each section recognisable in character but distinctly different in its re-appearance.

- Charlotte Bray

Performance Notes

The string marking half col legno means to play with both wood and hair of the bow, with a spiccato bow stroke.

Duration: 10 minutes