Eric Hodges Lecture Recital: Kenneth Hamilton plays Liszt, Brahms, Stevenson, British premiere of Casken’s Six Wooded Pieces
01/10/2019, 7:00 pm - 9:00 pm
Six Wooded Pieces in John Casken’s words:
In spite of having written many works including piano, before composing my new suite of pieces there were only two short pieces for solo piano: The Haunting Bough (written for Steven Gutman’s Les Enfants de Rameau project in 1999 – ‘le rameau’ in French meaning small branch or bough) and Pleasure Ground (2012). I decided to incorporate these in a new suite extending the theme of trees and wood, further developing my interest in the poetry, history and appearance of landscape and its features as extra-musical sources.
The Haunting Bough was re-notated from open-stave to metred notation and divided into two pieces which frame the new suite as the first and last movements. Pleasure Ground is renamed Swinging Bough, in respect of the character of the original piece, while three new pieces were composed drawing on the earlier two, with the wooded characters evoked as Shaded, Weathered and Silvered. Shaded Bough and Silvered Bough are contrasting slow movements, one dark and luminous, the other a free variation of Swinging Bough and using the brighter, upper registers of the keyboard. The whole new work was conceived for Kenneth Hamilton and the third, fourth and fifth pieces were written especially for him. He gave the first performance in the Esplanade Recital Hall, Singapore, on 13 April 2019.
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