Elegie (composed May 2010) is a orchestral work, unique in its duet for Shakuhachi and solo Cello with supportive, accompanying orchestra. It is a freely written work that is uninhibited in its form and harmonic constraints and gives an emotive, passionate performance across a broad swath of melodic tunefulness. It is an operatic treatment of thematic statements that has found a home in its deepest feelings.
The work derives its force not only from emotion but also from the strength of its writing. It has forged a powerful, supple language perfect for unschematic storytelling in its elegant heartfelt musical narrative. The sound speaks in uncommonly piercing ways – a broad, flowing melody is repeated over grounded, low strings tenderly evoking loneliness and despair only for its melody to be fractured by wrenching strings that possess a distinctly American voice.
The colorful palette vibrates with pathos and power, ranging from singingly high solo Cello lines to powerful, unapologetic impressionistic, impassioned phrases – so immediate – that its aching lamentoso sets the stage for the narrative and its development. It is eminently singable. Simple, in its soaring passages that are at once, most impressive and hugely enjoyable.