4 minutes 45 seconds| In Memory of My Parents: JoAnn Spears Teague (1938-2013) and Dennis Lee Teague (1938-2010). The image, titled Empathy, is supplied by the visionary Nineteenth century Russian symbolist painter, Nicholas Roerich.
Elegy begins with a common practice of mine when composing for ensemble strings. I use a lower velocity setting on the individual notes and hold them through chord shifts, hence creating two types of mild dissonance: a thready texture for the notes (owing to Stravinsky’s and Bartok’s influence); and the resulting creation of overlapping polychords. These combined effects are both unsettling and oddly beautiful, with the latter enhancement perhaps showing the influence of Mahler. Empathy includes a passage where clarinet, marimba, and timpani create a brief rush of atonality before the pretty piano tune returns.
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