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Richard Carrick

Adagios

for string quartet

2 violins, viola, cello (2009)
Duration16'
MovementsI. Elegy (to the memory of my father)
II. Suspended Adagio
III. Solo
IV. Adagio - Transcendent Coda
N.B. movements I and III can each be performed separately.
CommissionEiler Foundation
Premiere April 17, 2010; Carlsbad, Calofornia; JACK Quartet
PublisherPSNY

Media

Program Note

We know the "Adagio" as an umbrella term that includes many musical genres, including Elegy, In Memorial, March Funere, Pavane, Meditation, Nocturne, and Dance as well as well-known symphonic movements.  In immersing myself in the styles and many works written in these styles, I confronted one common quality of music that is by definition "at ease:" all of these pieces use the formal clarity of a single movement to achieve a heightened sense of expressivity from limited materials or starting points.

Having a rejuvenated appreciation for the breadth of possibilities while simultaneously wanting to compose a more substantial work than a single movement (most Adagios are under eight minutes), I decided to write three Adagios, with a fourth short movement as a coda to the work as a whole.

The first movement, Elegy (to the memory of my father), begins with perfect crescendo cutoff's being passed back and forth between instruments (with touches of tonal harmonies and non-melodic characteristics reminiscent of my father's musical influence). Alternating groups of instruments with different phrase lengths slowly unfold to create elaborate polyrhythms of sound, ultimately building to a powerful end. The second movement is a Suspended Adagio, where musical development is replaced by intensification.  In this shorter movement, "at rest" becomes complete stillness (yet still out of breath by the end!).  The third movement, Solo, has the viola spin out a never ending melody to heroic proportions with kaleidoscopic textural support from the ensemble, ending with a monolithically crushing intensity and stillness.

There is also a meta-narrative in these three adagios, albeit a non-linear one: the soul of the individual descending and confronting death (Movement III - Solo), facing the moment of truth (Movement II - Suspended Adagio), being reflected upon by others (Movement I - Elegy), and disappearing back into the aether (Movement IV - Slow Adagio - Transcendent Coda).

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Types of Products

Full score and Solo Part (Digital)

Chamber Ensemble Score (Print)

Piano Reduction and solo parts (Digital)

Choral Score Set - 16 copies (Print)
Includes 8 copies of the soprano/alto part and 8 copies of the tenor/bass part.

Score and part (Digital)

Score and part (Print)

Conductor Score (Print)

Full Score/Violin Part (Print)

Full Score/Violin Part (Digital)

Piano reduction and solo part (Print)

Piano/Vocal Score (Print)

Piano/Vocal Score (Digital)

Video and instructions (Digital)

Study Score in Two Volumes (Print)

Score and Parts (Digital)
Score and part PDF files are delivered via email upon receipt. Any electronic files associated with the work are included with every purchase.

Soprano/Alto Part (Print)

Full Score (Digital)
A PDF file of the full score is delivered via email upon receipt.

Full Score (Print)
A print edition of the score ships to the customer's address upon receipt.

Tenor/Bass Part (Print)

Parts (Digital)
A PDF file of the part(s) is delivered via email upon receipt.

Parts (Print)
A print edition of the part(s) ship to the customer's address upon receipt.

Solo Instrument Score (Digital)
A score PDF file is delivered via email upon receipt. Any electronic files associated with the work are included with every purchase. An email containing a link to download the electronic files is sent to the customer's email address.

Full Score/Performance Score (Digital)
The full score serves as a performance score for all players. A score PDF file is delivered via email upon receipt. Any electronic files associated with the work are included with every purchase. An email containing a link to download the electronic files is sent to the customer's email address.

Score and Parts (Print)
A print edition of the score and part(s) ship to the customer's address upon receipt. Any electronic files associated with the work are included with every purchase. The email containing a link to download the electronic files is sent to the customer.

Solo Instrument Score (Print)
A print edition of the score is shipped to the customer's address upon receipt. Any electronic files associated with the work are included with every purchase. An email containing a link to download the electronic files is sent to the customer's email address.

Full Score/Performance Score (Print)
The full score serves as a performance score for all players. Print edition(s) of the full score/performance score are shipped to the customer's address upon receipt. Multiple copies are included if the work has more than one player. Any electronic files associated with the work are included with every purchase.

Choral Score (Digital)
A PDF file of the choral score is delivered via email upon receipt. The set is priced to allow multiple copies of the PDF to be printed for performance by the purchasing organization only.

Choral Score Set- 8 copies (Print)
Minimum order quantity is 8 copies. Single copies are not available.

Vocal Score (Digital)

Vocal Score (Print)

Choral Score (Print)

Full Score and Solo Part (Print)
A print edition of the score and solo part ships to the customer's address upon receipt.

Study Score (Print)

Study Score (Digital)