Op. 22 – Piano Sonata Caucasian Journey

Piano

  1. The Bosporus (Dark, heavy)
  2. Scherzo (Fast and mostly marcato)
  3. Lyrical
  4. Caucasian Journey (Vivace; Slow, langorous)

A virtuoso piece requiring technique and stamina, the Piano Sonata should fill the listener with the sensation of traveling great distances through mysterious territory. I imagine it as a journey through the Black Sea into Central Asia. The first movement, The Bosporus, is dark and hazy, like a boat enshrouded in fog. The mists lift briefly for a mysterious burst of light before settling in again. The second movement, one assumes, takes place in an urban port such as Istanbul, with an active night life. The final movement, Caucasian Journey, the longest of the four, is an eastern-flavored dance in 5/8 time with dramatic and introspective episodes.

The Piano Sonata presents many contrasting styles - the middle movements in particular reflect my interest in rock as a stylistic basis for serious composition - but the thematic material interpenetrates all four movements to an extent that it forms a continuous development towards a final outcome.

The light-hearted Scherzo could be played independently as a brilliant encore piece, and the third movement, though linked without pause to the finale, is also provided with an alternative ending for performance as a separate work.