Of Wood and Touch
(Cello and Piano).
Audio clip of "Of Wood and Touch" performed by Gianna Abondolo, cello, and Teresa McCollough, piano.
Also available as:
Bass and Piano).
Also available as:
(for Viola and Piano).
Audio clip of "Of String and Touch" performed by Peter Neubert, viola, and Stacy Kawk, piano, in a live concert.
"Of Bow and Touch is a very effective and accessible work, with artful melodies and inventive use of harmonies and textures."
------- Hans Sturm, Bass World Magazine, 2001
"...a very interesting and effective work."
------- Gordon Rumson, Music & Vision Magazine, May 2001
Of Bow and Touch received a 2001 award from The International Society of Bassists.
|The bassoon and piano version of this piece, Of Breath and Touch, is featured on Carolyn Beck's 2005 CD, Beck and Call, on Crystal Records CD 846. Click CD for more info.|
Wood and Touch is a passionate piece for a cello and piano duo, and offers an adventurous
cellist a broad range of music to explore within a single movement. This sonata is an adaptation
of my 1999 bassoon and piano work, Of Breath and Touch. Not all pieces lend themselves to new incarnations, but this one seems to be particularly well suited to the intensities of a bow in lieu of a bassoonist's bocal.
There is also a successful adaptation of this piece for double bass and piano, titled Of Bow and Touch, which was given an award from the International Society of Double Bassists in 2001, and violist Peter Neubert suggested and aided in bringing the piece to his neck of the wooded instruments, with Of String and Touch.
Review by Hans Sturm in the 2001 edition of Bass World:
Of Bow and Touch is a dramatic work with beautiful bass melodies and an intriguing use of harmony and texture.
The piece begins with a striking introduction: pedaled E flats in the piano echo over four octaves in the lower register. The bass enters majestically with a double dotted theme over long held low chords. After a brief fermata, the A theme appears, featuring broken sixteenth notes arpeggios in the piano, beginning with strong accents that slowly die away. While the piano texture remains consistent throughout the A section, the bass melody begins as an arc of long held notes, punctuated by sixteenth note flourishes and dotted syncopations.
After an extended passage of fast rhythms spiccato, the melody reappears before the rubato B theme is established. Rich quiet harmonies support a lyric bel canto, yet complex rhythms in the melody. Slight ritardandos alternate with a tempo bars in 6/4 throughout the B section.
A virtuosic cadenza marked "very freely, improvisation is encouraged" further embellishes the melody with double stops, sixteenth note triplet arpeggios, and intricate runs. The B theme returns, followed by a highly syncopated contrapuntal passage that accelerates into the final statement of the A section.
|Of Wood and Touch, page 8|
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