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UBC Theses and Dissertations

The Straits of Messina : a chamber concerto for piano and fourteen players Scott, David Raphael

Abstract

The Straits of Messina is a fifteen-minute musical composition scored for piano, clarinet, bass clarinet, bassoon, trumpet, tenor trombone, bass trombone, two percussion, two violins, two violas, cello and double bass. The work is in one continuous movement and features the piano most prominently. The entire concept and large-scale progress of this work is indebted to the single organic shape of the spiral. This is used to control the overall form, basic timbral progress and underlying pitch content at both foreground and background levels. These controlled parameters are balanced, however, by freedom in the areas of rhythm, intensity, pulse, texture and register which develop as the piece progresses. The balance of freedom and control creates a vital tension, resulting in a dramatic unfolding of musical material. The Supporting Document for The Straits of Messina offers a general introduction to some of the working methods employed in the composition, along with detailed analysis of specific sections of interest. An Appendix provides a descriptive commentary on the work.

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