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Valse Triste (Dumka)

Updated: Jan 10, 2022

Mi Won and I recently recorded this new work that was written for a very special ballet performance in early 2018. My wife's artwork will be the backdrop of the performance by the "Balletfoundation for the XXI Century" in February. I also plan on the piano "world premiere" of the one piano (four hands) version to take place on October 28, 2017, during the opening festivities for the grand opening of the Kawai Piano Gallery in Plano, Texas.

When I begin a new work, I am always researching ideas connected with the commission. The form of the Dumka was my first thought as far as considering its roots which reflect peasant life in a folk-like setting. Originating from a Polish dance form, a number of composers have used the alternating form of a dark melodic opening section and an exuberant contrasting section. Tchaikovsky and Dvorak have created wonderfully crafted works for the piano with this form as a model. My work begins with a melodic idea that blends two players at one piano in a waltz-like structure that focuses on a tapestry of counterpoint with both players equally presenting the rich melodic material.

As with all my music for the piano, the FJH Music Company will publish this duet in "The FJH Piano Ensemble Series" which includes many of my other works for piano ensemble.

Timothy Brown, Shigeru Kawai Artist

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