concerto for piano and strings

Paul Alan Barker

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concerto for piano and strings

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Composer Paul Alan Barker
Year of Composition 2014
Duration ca.12'

Instrumentation Strings, Piano
Categories (all composers) , ,
Catalogue ID ce-pab1n1


NATYA is a slow and quiet piece of music which lasts a little under 13 minutes. NATYA is a score which requires to be performed in front of an audience and some indications of this are in the score.

The Natya Shastra is an ancient Indian treatise on theatre, dance and music. We may learn there that peace has to be practised. Peace is not a state of inertia and inaction but one which awareness and consideration might replace reaction and opinion. The peace I found in the music is neither melancholic nor ecstatic; it is, however, extremely affirmative.

This concerto demands much of its performers but not in the traditional concept of virtuosity, but rather in understanding its essential spiritual nature. The apparent simplicity of the piano part demands individual consideration for each note exposed: rarely do two notes occur simultaneously except for special effect, rather each has its own place.

The dynamic and rhythmic challenges include how to negotiate a tempo that starts slow at 48 beats per minute, then slows down through 32, and then further to 22 before a final ralentando into silence. It may be performed by solo pianist with either a string quintet or a small string orchestra. An ideal performance would include a dance performance, to reflect its theme.