for Violin & Piano (2001)
Duration: 5 minutes
Availability: For sale
Premiere: April 2005 at Rock Hall, Temple University (Philadelphia, Pennsylvania). Network for New Music.
I composed this short toccata for violin and piano in 2001 to be the second movement of an ambitious violin sonata. Clocking in at forty minutes, the work proved to be too unwieldy for practical performance and I divided it into three smaller pieces: Violin Sonata (2001), Mercury for Violin and Piano (2001) and Proteus Variants (2003).
The quicksilver violin begins playing three-note patterns superimposed over a four-note metrical grid that in turn bounces off of the piano’s steadily accented jabs. The piece evolves into a work in perpetual motion based on these basic premises, varying phrase lengths, the number of notes in patterns and instrumentation.