Music Favorites II - Sumiki's Nocturne for Flute, Cello, and Piano
Originally a working title, this Nocturne was composed in late June and early July of this year, and was premiered in concert on my birthday, the conclusion of a three-week-long composition workshop at the University of North Carolina School of the Arts. This is the same concert I alluded to in a previous entry, so yes, that's me at the piano. (Bow ties are cool.)
The melodic content of the Nocturne was developed out of the arpeggiated phrase that becomes practically an ostinato by the piano. Emphasis is given to the flute and cello as solo instruments as opposed to the piano, which mainly executes arpeggiations (in various forms), emphasizing harmonies and rhythm, with only occasional melodic content. Both the other players got confused with the beat at certain points, and I can't blame them - there's one passage where the time signature goes from 4/4 to 7/4 to 5/4 to 6/4 to 7/4 to 3/4, but we got most of the kinks worked out in rehearsals and that particular section went off without a hitch.
To round off the piece and to give a sense of night coming to a close, I included a birdsong imitation at the end. Also present near the end is a musical shout-out to Alexei Stanchinsky's lone Nocturne, an underrated piece and one of my favorites in the genre.
Since I know what was supposed to be played, I noted no less than six deviations from the score upon hearing the recording - two by the flutist, two by the cellist, and two by me. The great thing about pieces that no one's ever heard before, though, is that there's no way of telling what was accurate and what was inaccurate.