• Poul Ruders
  • Four Dances in One Movement (1983)
    (4 Dances in One Movement)

  • Edition Wilhelm Hansen Copenhagen (World)
  • 18 min

Programme Note

The piece, which was commissioned and premiered by The London sinfonietta, is a multi-emotional display for virtuoso ensemble, and "entertainment" in four contrasting moods: Whispering - Rocking - Ecstatic and Extravagant. The nervous distant trembling of the first dance is later on whipped into extremely direct and muscular proportions in the last, and the mellow tunes introduced by the second dance Rocking form the principal melodic scaffolding of the remainder of the composition, in fierce competition with a horn- and trombone fanfare thrown in immediately at the start of the fast and spiky third dance Ecstatic which employs African Djoboko-rhytms.

The two horizontal elements sweep along together, virtually melting into one line, and the hammering ‘avanti’ of the coda is suddenly stopped dead by a short, significant general pause. Thereafter the work reforms and disappears into a hushed, ghost-like recapitulation of the second dance.

- Poul Ruders

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