At the Riverpiano (2011)
|Commission||Ecstatic Music Festival|
|Premiere||March 5, 2011; Merkin Hall, Kaufman Center, New York, NY; Timothy Andres, piano|
The third in a series of pieces having to do with Charles Ives and the tradition of musical Americana, At the River is an old-school piano “fantasy” on the American hymn Shall We Gather at the River?. The tune is first exploded into a long, quasi-improvised “strumming piece”, whose repetitive figurations pay homage to the minimalist juggernauts of Alvin Curran and Charlemagne Palestine. After a gradual ascent to the top of the keyboard, a distant chorale takes up; more recognizable bits of the hymn are heard in far-flung keys. At the River is dedicated to Ingram Marshall, whose work merges sacred and secular in mysterious and beautiful ways.