• Brian Elias
  • Three Scherzi (2008)

  • Chester Music Ltd (World)
  • pf/vn
  • 18 min

Programme Note

These three pieces for violin and piano follow closely the Minuet and Trio form used so often for lighter movements in eighteenth and early nineteenth century sonatas and symphonies. In each piece, the Minuet is divided into two sections, and each section is repeated; similarly the Trio section is also divided into two repeated sections in which the music is generally more gently paced.

After the Trio, the minuet is played again immediately, this time without repeats. In these Scherzi I have chosen to use variants of the original of each section in most instances, rather than make exact repetitions. The first Scherzo lasts approximately 3 minutes, the second 6 minutes, and the third 2 minutes. Part of my interest and purpose in writing these pieces was to use an identical but highly elastic form for three pieces of different durations. I was also intrigued by the form’s historical development and evolution into the Scherzo, and I hope this explains the atmosphere and style of the music.

The material for each of the three pieces is different, although the harmonic and rhythmic worlds of each one are similar and, as a result, they do form a complete work in three movements. However, each of the three Scherzi may be played separately.

These three pieces were written between September 2004 and August 2007.