The three movements of Creations are inspired by three ideas: canons, colors, and contrasts.
Canons, energetic and playful, is based on an ascending nine-note scale. In the beginning, the scale is set in steady 8th notes which are rhythmically augmented as the scale rises. This stretching of the scale causes interesting overlap between the imitation parts and becomes a major musical element in the rest of the movement.
Colors, slow and poignant, was written in memory of composer Steven Stucky, a personal friend and mentor, who passed away in early 2016. His initials, double S, are represented by a musical cryptogram, double E-flat. The outer sections of the rounded form reference the melody from the final chorus of Bach's St. Matthew Passion: We sit down with tears and call to You in the grave: rest gently, gently rest!
Contrasts, fast and aggressive, is a series of punctuated tutti outbursts and calmer, more flowing phrases of steady 8th notes. The piano and marimba provide an almost unbroken ostinato that the other instruments double in a variety of contrasting ways.
Clarinet in B-flat
Trumpet in C
PREMIEREJuly 20, 2016
Jewett Arts Center, Wellesley, MA
Wellesley Composer’s Conference Musicians, James Baker (cond.)