Mercury Concerto

for Flute and Large Chamber Ensemble (or Orchestra)

Carter Pann

Duration: 00:23:00
Publisher: Theodore Presser Company
Print Status: Rental

Quick Overview

Mercury Concerto (2008/9), commissioned by the River Oaks Chamber Orchestra in Houston TX, is the culmination of my great and anxious excitement to write a work for flutist Christina Jennings. You can imagine my luck to have such a balanced artist show interest in a prospective work of mine! I immediately took to the task of 'fantasizing' the music for her.
I am a composer who leans heavily on both the structural integrity in my music as well as an attractive melodic/harmonic framework. These ingredients were precisely at the forefront of my sketch work for the concerto. Also, I love to exploit a performer's musical capacity (especially in the art of the 'concerto'). For Christina I had an extremely wide range in which to work.
Cast in three movements (i.e. Fast, Slow, Very Fast), Mercury Concerto runs the gamut of musical expression over 20 minutes. I do something different from anything I have done before in this first movement ?there is a 'piece within a piece' here. The language is fiercely tonal while Christina plays an invention over rushing strings. The middle section is a straight-up pop tune. The muted trumpet joins the flute in a cheeky dance, which then returns to the previous music in a rush to finish. The second movement, marked ?Contemplative?, is a piece in which I try to evoke a kind of 'Night Music.' This is an airy, breathing movement for only the solo flute and strings/harp (no woodwinds play in this movement). Christina will sing as beautifully as I know she can throughout this movement. The last movement is a true finale to the concerto. It is devilishly difficult in places, pushing the technical into the pyrotechnical realm. I liken this last movement to a kind of Scherzo Diabolique (part moto perpetuo, part whimsy)
On the whole, Mercury Concerto represents a work of genuinely excited exploitation of the best instrumentalists, a group in which Christina Jennings belongs without contest.

Additional Information

Commission Commissioned by the River Oaks Chamber Orchestra, Houston TX for Christina Jennings
Composition Date 2008/2009
Orchestration Solo Fl.; 1 2 2 1 - 2 1 0 0; Timp. 2Perc. Hp. Str.
Premiere April 18, 2009 - Houston, Texas River Oaks Chamber Orchestra Christina Jennings


I. Opening
II. Contemplative
III. Finale

Score Preview

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