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Piano Concerto

Piano Concerto

for piano and chamber orchestra


  • Instrumentation: piano and chamber orchestra
  • Edition: performance material
  • Order No.: LSL 10480

Description
This work falls into four movements. The opening Ariosopits quiet, obsessive rhythmic figures against the piano’sbrief chorale-like utterances. The argument becomesmore contrapuntally involved, reaching a tentativeclimax, before dissolving back into the hazy mood of thebeginning. The second movement, the longest of the four, is aClassically designed Scherzo and Trio. Here the pianoweaves an insistent pattern of quick, cascading figures,oblivious to the short, sharp attacks of the orchestra. TheTrio that follows consists of two sections: the firstinvolves imitative games played out between piano, solowoodwind and eventually all the violins; next, after ashort transition, comes a languorous waltz which windsdown to near stasis. A return to the scherzo materialcloses the movement. The Notturno reduces the orchestra to strings and harpand is a kind of fantasia on a Polish folk song I first heardsung, movingly, around a late-night campfire. The song’s(for me) resulting association with night-time accountsfor the dreamlike and sometimes nightmarish quality ofthe free variations based around its melody. This theme,which is first heard adorned by a simple canon at thepiano’s first entry, contains its own internal, repetitiveechoes which in my version I give to the harp. Increasingly, as the movement progresses, the harp takeson the role of the soloist’s ‘shadow’. At the close, the songin its canonic form ascends into the highest register ofthe piano, barely audible. The Gigue harks back to the 6/8 dance form of the samename which, in the hands of Baroque composers, oftencontained contrapuntal elements – as mine does too. Thewoodwind’s lively fugal opening recalls the firstmovement’s initial obsessive figures, now expanded tofull melodic status. The piano immediately counters byintroducing a more cantabile theme which struggles toestablish itself against the more dominant 6/8 material.A brief battle between piano and orchestra is initiallywon by the latter, only for the piano to launch into anexplosive cadenza. This traverses the movement’s twomain themes before a crash from the orchestra freezesthe music into a short recollection of the Arioso chorale.The piano, left alone, wanders to the concerto’s close. Ryan Wigglesworth
Details
Auftragswerk : Co-commissioned by BBC Radio 3 and Melbourne Symphony Orchestra
Content text: I Arioso
II Scherzo
III Notturno
IV Gigue
Performance duration: 22' 0"
Publisher: Schott Music Ltd., London
Year of composition: 2019
instrumentation: 2(2.pic).2(2.ca).2(2.bcl).2(2.cbsn)-4.2.0.0-timp.perc(tam-t, clash cym, b.d., s.d., sandpaper blocks, rutes)-hp-str(12.10.8.6.5)
Performances
Conductor: Ryan Wigglesworth
2021-08-06 | London (United Kingdom), St Martin in the Fields — 19:30
Conductor: Ryan Wigglesworth
2021-05-21 | Snape (United Kingdom), Snape Maltings Concert Hall — 19:00
Conductor: Ryan Wigglesworth
2021-05-21 | Snape (United Kingdom), Snape Maltings Concert Hall — 16:00
Conductor: Ryan Wigglesworth
Orchestra: Sinfonia Lahti
2020-11-26 | Lahti (Finland), Sibeliustalo — 19.00 | national Premiere
Conductor: Ryan Wigglesworth
Orchestra: Nederlands Philharmonisch Orkest
2020-10-03 | Amsterdam (Netherlands), Concertgebouw — 13.00 | national Premiere
Conductor: Ryan Wigglesworth
Orchestra: Nederlands Philharmonisch Orkest
2020-10-03 | Amsterdam (Netherlands), Concertgebouw — 15.15 | national Premiere
Conductor: Ryan Wigglesworth
Orchestra: Seattle Symphony
2020-02-29 | Seattle (United States of America), Benaroya Hall — 20:00
Conductor: Ryan Wigglesworth
Orchestra: Seattle Symphony
2020-02-28 | Seattle (United States of America), Benaroya Hall — 12:00
Conductor: Ryan Wigglesworth
Orchestra: Seattle Symphony
2020-02-27 | Seattle (United States of America), Benaroya Hall — 19:30 | national Premiere
Conductor: Ryan Wigglesworth
Orchestra: Britten Sinfonia
2019-08-28 | London (United Kingdom), Royal Albert Hall | World Premiere
This work falls into four movements. The opening Ariosopits quiet, obsessive rhythmic figures against the piano’sbrief chorale-like utterances. The argument becomesmore contrapuntally involved, reaching a tentativeclimax, before dissolving back into the hazy mood of thebeginning. The second movement, the longest of the four, is aClassically designed Scherzo and Trio. Here the pianoweaves an insistent pattern of quick, cascading figures,oblivious to the short, sharp attacks of the orchestra. TheTrio that follows consists of two sections: the firstinvolves imitative games played out between piano, solowoodwind and eventually all the violins; next, after ashort transition, comes a languorous waltz which windsdown to near stasis. A return to the scherzo materialcloses the movement. The Notturno reduces the orchestra to strings and harpand is a kind of fantasia on a Polish folk song I first heardsung, movingly, around a late-night campfire. The song’s(for me) resulting association with night-time accountsfor the dreamlike and sometimes nightmarish quality ofthe free variations based around its melody. This theme,which is first heard adorned by a simple canon at thepiano’s first entry, contains its own internal, repetitiveechoes which in my version I give to the harp. Increasingly, as the movement progresses, the harp takeson the role of the soloist’s ‘shadow’. At the close, the songin its canonic form ascends into the highest register ofthe piano, barely audible. The Gigue harks back to the 6/8 dance form of the samename which, in the hands of Baroque composers, oftencontained contrapuntal elements – as mine does too. Thewoodwind’s lively fugal opening recalls the firstmovement’s initial obsessive figures, now expanded tofull melodic status. The piano immediately counters byintroducing a more cantabile theme which struggles toestablish itself against the more dominant 6/8 material.A brief battle between piano and orchestra is initiallywon by the latter, only for the piano to launch into anexplosive cadenza. This traverses the movement’s twomain themes before a crash from the orchestra freezesthe music into a short recollection of the Arioso chorale.The piano, left alone, wanders to the concerto’s close. Ryan Wigglesworth
Auftragswerk : Co-commissioned by BBC Radio 3 and Melbourne Symphony Orchestra
Content text: I Arioso
II Scherzo
III Notturno
IV Gigue
Performance duration: 22' 0"
Publisher: Schott Music Ltd., London
Year of composition: 2019
instrumentation: 2(2.pic).2(2.ca).2(2.bcl).2(2.cbsn)-4.2.0.0-timp.perc(tam-t, clash cym, b.d., s.d., sandpaper blocks, rutes)-hp-str(12.10.8.6.5)
Conductor: Ryan Wigglesworth
2021-08-06 | London (United Kingdom), St Martin in the Fields — 19:30
Conductor: Ryan Wigglesworth
2021-05-21 | Snape (United Kingdom), Snape Maltings Concert Hall — 19:00
Conductor: Ryan Wigglesworth
2021-05-21 | Snape (United Kingdom), Snape Maltings Concert Hall — 16:00
Conductor: Ryan Wigglesworth
Orchestra: Sinfonia Lahti
2020-11-26 | Lahti (Finland), Sibeliustalo — 19.00 | national Premiere
Conductor: Ryan Wigglesworth
Orchestra: Nederlands Philharmonisch Orkest
2020-10-03 | Amsterdam (Netherlands), Concertgebouw — 13.00 | national Premiere
Conductor: Ryan Wigglesworth
Orchestra: Nederlands Philharmonisch Orkest
2020-10-03 | Amsterdam (Netherlands), Concertgebouw — 15.15 | national Premiere
Conductor: Ryan Wigglesworth
Orchestra: Seattle Symphony
2020-02-29 | Seattle (United States of America), Benaroya Hall — 20:00
Conductor: Ryan Wigglesworth
Orchestra: Seattle Symphony
2020-02-28 | Seattle (United States of America), Benaroya Hall — 12:00
Conductor: Ryan Wigglesworth
Orchestra: Seattle Symphony
2020-02-27 | Seattle (United States of America), Benaroya Hall — 19:30 | national Premiere
Conductor: Ryan Wigglesworth
Orchestra: Britten Sinfonia
2019-08-28 | London (United Kingdom), Royal Albert Hall | World Premiere