• Gunther Schuller
  • Lament for M (1994)

  • Margun Music (World)
  • 1000/0000/dmkit/hp/str (4.4.3.3.2)
  • Tenor saxophone
  • 6 min

Programme Note

Composer Note:

Lament for M is dedicated to the memory of my late wife, Marjorie. Its anguished opening statement gives way to a three-way cadenza for tenor saxophone, bass and drums which builds to a considerable climax, gradually subsiding into a more tranquil, flute-led episode. But a brief 12-tone, pizzicato bass passage initiates another “free” cadenza, this time reaching an even more anguished climax. This is followed by music of an almost motionless calm and prayerful stillness. Indeed, after a descending 12-tone chord in muted solo strings and a final peaceful lament from the tenor saxophone, one seems to hear a hushed Amen in the strings, adorned only by a fluttering flute trill and gentle “teardrop” harp harmonic.

—Gunther Schuller