Ebony Mirror (2016)

for horn and piano [ca. 16 minutes]

Program Note

The three movements of Ebony Mirror are stylistically determined by various emotional states I experience when composing at the piano. Celebration represents a childish joy and an almost “caffeinated” happiness. The musical material in this movement emphasizes repeated patterns and rhythmic fragmentation. Reflection represents a calm and self-aware state of mind. The material of this movement emphasizes the shifting of timbres in the horn as well as the decay and interplay of resonance in the piano using the sustain pedal. The pulse of this movement is slow and steady in a “ritualistic” style. The final movement, Adoration, represents a form of love or ecstasy. The material of this movement centers around long-spanning swells in dynamic to emphasize the harmonic sensations of tension and release. Ideas that originated from the previous two movements are placed throughout, with the “rhythmic filter” of the third movement. Though the character of each movement is quite different, the melody presented in the opening bars of the piano is weaved into all three. This piece is meant to be played continuously with no disruption to the flow of thought.

Ebony Mirror was premiered on February 28th, 2016 for Monick’s senior horn recital at the University of Connecticut. This piece was later performed in Fiera di Primiero, Italy by Robert Hoyle for the Summer 2016 Music Academy International Chamber Program.

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