You done torn your playhouse down

for solo piano

--- James Erber

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for solo piano

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Composer James Erber
Year of Composition 1996
Duration ca.7'

Instrumentation 9328
Categories (all composers) ,
Catalogue ID ce-je1ydt1


I have admired the beauty, power and constant inventiveness of Michael Finnissy’s work ever since I first encountered it in the early 1970’s, and I was very happy to oblige when Ian Pace requested a short piece for inclusion in a recital in celebration of Finnissy’s 50th birthday.

The stimulus for You done torn your playhouse down was a concert by Ian Pace of Finnissy’s jazz and blues-inspired piano music in March 1996. I borrowed the title from a blues recorded in 1935 by the pianist and vocalist Clarence Lofton. The music pays homage to Michael Finnissy’s work by responding to the intensity of Lofton’s piano playing and the violence and eroticism implicit in his lyrics.

You done torn your playhouse down was given its first performance by Ian Pace at the British Music Information Centre, London on 11th July 1996. I made a new edition of the score in 2007, and carried out further minor revisions in 2018.