This work was written for Walter and Elsa Verdehr. The Verdehr Duo first performed
the work in 1998 at the Blue Lake Fine Arts Camp with the composer conducting the Festival Orchestra. Many other performances followed in both the United States and Europe.
Based on the traditional sonata form, the first movement, Allegro moderato, creates
flowing melodic themes in a musical dialogue between the violin and clarinet,
interspersed with brilliant technical passages. After a short duo-cadenza, these themes
return. The Adagio movement is a three-part song form with sustained melodies and a
contrasting middle section that is a strongly rhythmic in character. A snare drum solo
introduces the final Allegro, a rondo-type movement which employs two folk-like tunes, which alternate among violin, clarinet and orchestra. These tunes provide the thematic basis for a highly technical display of the soloists’ talent, bringing the work to a brillant close.
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