UBC Theses and Dissertations

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UBC Theses and Dissertations

Ordinary beauty Padgett, Eileen Victoria


Ordinary Beauty is a piece for piano and strings (Violin I, Violin II, Viola, Cello, Bass). The string parts may be performed by a string orchestra, or with a single player on each part. The work is approximately 23 minutes in length, and comprises of 5 movements, each named after and inspired by scenes of commonplace beauty found in the natural surroundings of Vancouver. The movements are as follows: Leaf in the Wind, Petals in the Rain, Sunlit Grove, Hawk in Flight, and Ocean Spray. Ordinary Beauty overlays Romantic structures on minimalist patterns. The minimalist figures heighten the rhythmic interest, while the Romantic melodic and harmonic principles provide the piece with structure and direction. The piece pays homage to the natural world, but also explores the boundaries between nature and technology; minimalism has ties to industrialization and machinery, while Romanticism is associated with pastoral imagery. The intentional juxtaposition and hybridization of these styles questions the boundaries and limits of both the respective styles and their real-world associations.

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