For solo piano
Duration: 5.5 minutes
Commissioned by Concert Artists Guild for pianist Daria Rabotkina
World premiere: January 26, 2013
Atlantic Music Center, Florida
Daria Rabotkina, piano
In naming this piece Novelette, I suppose that some comparisons to the celebrated Schumann pieces of the same name will be inevitable. However, any musical parallels to these (or to other novelettes) are purely coincidental. I chose the title because the piece is narrative, and it packs a lot of story into a tight time frame—there’s a sweeping journey, but everything happens quite fast. While I don’t want to give away the whole story, I’d encourage listeners to hear a duet, with each hand as a character. At times they seem to dance around each other, at other times one moves into the background to observe. One might invade the other’s space a bit. One may even leave the stage for awhile. Pianistically, it can be a juggling act to maintain the independence of the voices, each with its own harmonic profile and rhythmic tendencies, as they weave different textures and move through different episodes. As their story resolves, however, the boundaries between them disappear, and they blend into a single, unified voice that can fly, freely and unhindered, around the keyboard. Novelette was premiered by pianist Daria Rabotkina on January 26, 2013, at the Atlantic Music Center in Melbourne, Florida.