The Feather Quartet

for improvising string quartet

Craig Vear

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for improvising string quartet

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Composer Craig Vear

Year of Composition


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Categories (all composers) , , , , ,
Catalogue ID ce-cv1tfq1


The Feather Quartet is a digital score for an improvising quartet. It is inspired by an extract from a Tove Jansson short story The Scolder from her book The Summer Book. In this extract an elderly grandmother is lying down on a quiet beach looking at a tiny piece of down caught in barbs of a plant leaf. She describes in great detail this feather and how it moves with the slight breeze. Her description evokes a sense of beauty in this minute event and draws attention to the profundity of concentrating on such small details. This profound seeking is at the heart of this piece; the musicians are instructed to seek such detail in the score, and the audience are invited into a careful listening experience that acts as a metaphor for the feather caught momentarily in the plant leaf on a deserted beach.

NOTE: These scores are based in software. Although they share many similar properties to that of paper based/traditional scoring methods, they also benefit from the usability and functionality of dynamic software environments. The visual information will be familiar to the musician and welcomed by a curious spirit of adventure. Above all, these scores are responsive, evolving as the performance progresses – giving the feeling of being alive – and should be considered as co-operative creative partners.

Please click on the score above for a full description of the concept of the work, as well as technical and performance instructions (including full instrumentation).

As sold by Composers Edition this product includes all the files necessary to perform the work including the software files and media samples. Due to the size of these files these will be delivered via online transfer. To receive your files please email [email protected] stating the operating system on which you wish to run the files: MacOS/Windows.