Floating Shifts for large orchestra
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I decided to compose a piece which would ideally be used as a concert opener. Despite being in one movement, the structure of the work is inspired by that of a symphony: in four movements with an introduction. Mystery, excitement, intense expression and a high level of virtuosity and adrenaline are clear distinctive elements of the work. I was particularly interested in being very economical with the choice of material and very generous with the use of it, to make it flexible and naturally suitable for completely different settings. The musical expression changes rather drastically throughout the course of the work. Ultimately silence is the origin and arrival of it all. There is a continuous rhythmical exploitation that provides richness to the shifting material. These changes create the sensation of switching to a different dimension every time we perceive something seemingly familiar but presented to us under a different light. The main compositional procedure has been to use one same element which "floats" in these dimensions and shifts around them. It functions first as the basis for a mysterious invocation. Recycled, filtered and refreshed it is used again to bring life to the entirety of the work. Just as in painting the technique of chiaroscuro creates an illusion of volume by means of opposing light and shadow, here the continuous musical image is a result of one same idea combined from different perspectives. The opening phrase in the alto flute receives several transformations in different sections of the work and eventually becomes the driving force for the highly-volatile finale.