Abstraction en metal et bois (2001) by Richard Festinger
for piano and pecussion

Construction in Metal and Wood is a virtuosic work for piano and mixed percussion. The music unfolds in five large sections. At the outset, the two performers respond to each other in a rapid-fire game of increasingly agitated action and reaction, until they come together in a passage featuring motoric percussion accompanying dense piano chords. Following that, quiet, sparse music gradually accelerates to another climax. As this second climax dies away, again there emerges music that is quiet, suspended, contemplative in character; but now, instead of accelerating, it dies away, leaving behind a feeling of suspense, incompleteness, a lack of fulfillment. The expectant silence is shattered by a jazzy, dancing duet for piano and vibraphone, which finally comes around to a return of the music of the beginning. Construction in Metal and Wood was commissioned by Thierry Miroglio and Ancuza Aprodu, and received its World Premiere performance at the University of Maryland during their 2001 U.S. tour. It was featured during the 2002 Festival Antidogma Musica at the Conservatorio Giusseppe Verdi in Torino last summer.

— R. F.    

[from program for May 19, 2003 concert]