Tender Illusionsclarinet in b-flat, bassoon, horn, string quartet, double bass (2010)
|Premiere||March 6, 2011; CalPerformances; Hertz Hall, University of California, Berkeley, CA; Scharoun Ensemble Berlin|
Tender Illusions is written for the same instrumentation as Schubert’s Octet, and although it starts with the same chord in the winds and bass as the Schubert, my piece creates an alternate reality, a path not taken. After the clarion opening taken from Schubert, we enter a dreamscape, one with rustling, unstable textures, and a melodic sensibility that perhaps has been abstracted from the lyrical second movement of the Schubert. The music is, as the title suggests, both tender and illusory.
There is a saying in Tibetan Buddhism, that when you are not formally meditating you should try to be a child of illusion, with fresh eyes to everything you come upon, and to view everything as being as insubstantial as a dream. It was only in this way that I was able to approach the Schubert Octet. The first chord of his piece could go anywhere; it became the passport to my piece.
Tender Illusions was written for the Scharoun Ensemble Berlin.