For chamber orchestra [1111/1111/2perc/pno/hp/str (min., max.]
Duration: c. 14’
First Performance: July, 9, 2009, Tokyo Sinfonietta, cond. Yasuaki Itakura
Written for Tokyo Sinfonietta, with financial support of Nederlands Fonds voor Podiumkunsten+

Program Note

Fast Movement and Epilogue is a piece about ‘fastness’ and virtuosity. We live in a time in which everything seems to go fast, everything seems to change fast and many people seem to be in a constant state of rush and hurry. However, I feel that this fast pace and hectic nature of contemporary life is something which is only rarely reflected in contemporary (classical) music, in which truly fast-paced pieces seem to be scarce. Even though in earlier eras, composers like Scarlatti, Haydn, Mozart, Rossini, Liszt, and so on, were all masters of the kind of fast and virtuoso music that is seldom being written today.
So when I got the commission to write a piece for Tokyo Sinfonietta, I set out to write a highly virtuoso piece that is among the fastest music I have written. Consequently, it turned out to be fiendishly difficult to play. The first ten or so minutes of this 14-minute piece should sound like a high-speed roller-coaster ride, requiring the musicians to maintain high energy playing and very fast tempi throughout. The music is characterized by driving, syncopated rhythms (that sometimes clearly refer to certain pop genres), insistent ostinati, moments of playfulness, lightness, humor and at times a Stravinskian bite. A contrasting slow, quiet and dreamy epilogue concludes the piece, putting the fast music in a slightly different light.

Click on the player below to listen to an audio sample of Fast Movement and Epilogue.