Commissioned by Goldsmith's College, University of London

  • 4(2pic)33+bcl.2/442+btbn.1/timp.5perc/pf/db/electronics
  • 10 min

Programme Note

Metamorphoses was commissioned by the University of London Goldsmith's College, and first performed in June 1979 with the composer conducting. It is scored for a slightly expanded orchestral wind section, with piano and four double basses.

Most of the material is derived from the opening motif, a rising chord of minor seconds and augmented fourths. Aleatoric cadenzas for different groups alternate with slow-moving metric passages and a faster ostinato figure on piano.

A central section introduces simple electronics, amplification of solo flute and clarinet with an echo device, accompanied first by percussion, later with low chords. The ostinato figure becomes more urgent, finally erupting into an energetic coda, which refers briefly to all of the earlier material.

Edward Gregson