Canadian Music Centre | SydneyEnterprise (Final)
Add As Favorite
Viewing Library Collection
OPAC Composer Showcase LibCol View
OPAC Mobile LibCol View
OPAC Search LibCol View
Add to Favourites
Create a New Favourites List
Great square of Pegasus "Alpheratz"
Found 1 record(s)
MI 3113 M1345gr 1997
Library Collection Publisher / Label
Unpublished, printed by CMC / Inédit, imprimé par le CMC
Pour violoncelle seul. Photocopie; l'original se trouve au CMC Montréal.
Borrow a copy of this work by adding it to your
and then submitting your Loan Request to CMC.
to purchase this work online.
Found 1 record(s)
Great Square of Pegasus
was commissioned by Société Radio-Canada/CBC as the imposed test piece for the 1997 CBC/SRC Young Performers Competition for strings. As the problems involved in writing one piece for four different instruments are numerous, I chose instead to compose four unique pieces, each of which would be ideally suited to its instrument. Even though the four are all interconnected motivically and structurally, each is thoroughly idiomatic-indeed, each is a work of virtuosic display complete in and of itself. After much reflection, I settled on the idea of combining my love of composing with my interests in Greek mythology and amateur astronomy. My many late night outings last summer burned in my memory the constellation Pegasus, the most prominent part of which is the "Great Square" with its four bright stars easily perceived as corners. For my composition, each instrument's piece takes the name of one of the stars of this square: "Markab" for violin, "Algenib" for viola, "Alpheratz" for cello and "Scheat" for double bass. Each piece takes us on a ride through the Pegasus myth starting with his birth from the decapitated body of the Medusa just after she was slain by Perseus, followed by his stamping open the Hippocrene Spring atop Mount Helicon, sacred to the Muses. It is said that all who drank from this spring were bestowed with the gift of song. In the next section the hero Bellerophon captures Pegasus with a magic bridle. Tamed, the winged Pegasus takes Bellerophon aloft and they soon battle and defeat the fire-breathing Chimera. Overweening confidence, however, leads Bellerophon to attempt a flight to Olympus to sit among the gods. The venture soon ends in disaster as Pegasus, sensing his rider's
, rears and throws him. Pegasus then enters Olympus alone and Zeus takes him as his thunderbolt carrier and immortalizes him as a constellation. In
The Great Square of Pegasus
I explore ancient Greek compositional techniques such as tetrachords with semitonal and quartertonal pyknons, both irregular and regular poetic metres and ancient melodic patterns in the context of my own musical language. There's also a special relationship among these pieces which was an added challenge I imposed upon myself-for composing is also an exercise in problem-solving! Although these "stars" are separate entities in the night sky, they also mean something to us as a group. Hence I decided at the outset to compose all four solos so that they could be played together as a quartet (albeit a busy one!), with the obvious inclusion of a few rests in the parts. Gestures and motives heard individually in the solos take on new meaning in the quartet version with such things as close imitations moving through the points of the "square" and special harmonic and textural effects which lend added dimensionality. The story of Pegasus became a favourite theme in Greek art and literature and in late antiquity the horse's soaring flight became an allegory for the soul's immortality. It is now regarded as a symbol of poetic inspiration and I hope that my musical poem will both challenge and inspire both performers and audience. Andrew Paul MacDonald (text from the composer's homepage)
Read the program notes on the composer's homepage
Lisez les notes des programmes sur le site web du Andrew Paul MacDonald (en anglais)
Found 1 record(s)
Extent of Item
1 partition (ii, 10 p.) ; 36 cm.
Found 4 record(s)
Number of Copies
SydneyEnterprise v188.8.131.52 - Canadian Music Centre | SydneyEnterprise (Final)