Horae (pro Clara)

Hesketh, K. (2019) Horae (pro Clara). [Composition]

Abstract

For solo piano, duration 40 minutes. This work was premiered by Clare Hammond at the Cheltenham Music Festival, 2013. Clare Hammond has also recorded the piece, on BIS recordings (BIS2193) see https://bis.se/label/bis/kenneth-hesketh-horae-pro-clara or https://www.prestomusic.com/classical/products/8113413--kenneth-hesketh-horae-pro-clara. "Written for the pianist Clare Hammond (the Clara of the title), this collection of piano miniatures takes the form of a breviary, or miniature book of hours. There are twelve pieces in the complete set of Horae and they run as follows: / I: Trasparente (diaphanous) / II: Velocissima assai (as fleet as the tiniest humming bird) / III: Semplice / IV: Agilmente (maniaco ed instabile - with never-ceasing energy) / V: Diretto, ancora fluido (like the splash and suspension of water droplets) / VI: Nervoso, ma dolce (flessibile) / VII: Capriccioso / VIII: Ritmico (giusto) (like intertwining chime clocks) - Flessibile / IX: Capriccioso (impishly sardonic) / X: Scorrevole (ma meccanico) (like an 'evening full of the linnet's wings') / XI: Indolente (...lapping, with low sounds) / XII: Molto misterioso, desolate ('for now we see through a glass, darkly') / Each of the twelve piano pieces, lasting between two and four minutes, explores various compositional games and ideas which result in varying demands of skill from the performer. / There is no direct programmatic element, but merely a distant resonance with the title allotted to each movement. Pieces share thematic material from across the complete set and may be performed together or in smaller groups. For example, pieces 1- 4 were written to form a unified musical arc, but it is my intention to leave the exact arrangement, number and selection of these pieces to the discretion of the performer. The performer may also link pieces together to form new connections (or discontinuities) between pieces." © Kenneth Hesketh

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