Program Note for Of All the Centuries

Of All the Centuries initially began as a work for solo cello and is my first work for small ensemble.  Written as an undergraduate, it was influenced by my first exposure to many contemporary composers such as Crumb, Albright, and Penderecki.  And as my knowledge of string techniques expanded, so did the piece.  Eventually, the structure became that of a large set of variations, all framed around sections where the entire trio would play.  These ensemble sets were subtitled with the office hours of the Roman Catholic Church (Vespers, Lauds, Matins, etc.) and each used elements from the surrounding variations.  The variations explored different combinations of instruments (duos, solos, etc.) with restricted intervallic material, and the entire work took on an arch form, with the first variation on the interval of a fourth and the last variation on the interval of a fifth.  At the close of the piece, an off-stage percussion part of tubular bells rings the tones of the chant that opens the piece.