Concerto for Marimba and Orchestra

Marta Ptaszynska

Duration: 00:30:00
Publisher: Theodore Presser Company
Print Status: Rental

Quick Overview

In 1983, I received a commission from one of the Polish symphony orchestras (the symphony in Zielona Gora) to write an orchestral piece. I was thinking about something in a large form of concerto for orchestra. But in 1984, after hearing Keiko Abe in a recital at the PASIC Convention in Ann Arbor, Michigan, I changed my mind immediately and decided to write a Concerto for Marimba and Orchestra instead. While working for almost two years in this large form, in the meantime (in 1984) I wrote a smaller piece for string orchestra ?La Novella d?Inverno? (?Winter?s Tale?) for the Polish Chamber Orchestra.

Finally, the Concerto was completed in 1985, and is approximately 24 minutes in length. It is scored for an orchestra consisting of 2 flutes and piccolo, 2 oboes, 2 clarinets, 2 bassoons and contrabassoon, 4 horns, 3 trumpets, 3 trombones, tuba, large percussion section, harp and strings.

The Concerto is in three movements with the following titles:
1. ?The Echo of Fear?
2. ?The Eye of Silence?
3. ?Thorn Trees?
These titles are taken from the surrealistic paintings of Max Ernst, Graham Sutherland and Yves Tanguy to reflect in the best possible way the mood and character of the music.

The first movement, resembling sonata-allegro form, is built on a descending tri-tone B(-E, while E usually sustains at the bottom of the orchestra. This movement begins with a characteristic theme introduced in marimba and is repeated in modified forms during the entire part.

The second movement, ?The Eye of Silence,? brings a broad, lyrical and expanding melodic line in an arch-like form.

The third movement, in the form of a theme with seven variations, gives priority to the vital dynamism in solo marimba as well as in the orchestra.

While writing this concerto, I was interested not only in the virtuoso piece for the marimba with an accompaniment of orchestra, but mainly I wanted to create a work where a harmonious partner-like relationship exists between soloist and orchestra and they are both inseparable.

Scores & Parts

Additional Information

Composition Date 1985
Orchestration Solo Marim.; 2 2 2 4(2Cbsn.) - 4 3 3 1; 4Perc. Hp. Str.
Premiere May 8, 1986