(2002) for flute and piano
duration: 10 minutes
premiere: Thomas Robertello (fl) and Chris Lysack (pn) on March 5, 2002 on a Faculty Recital at the Indiana University School of Music.
recording: Thomas Robertello, flute; Winston Choi, piano; From the album "Gypsy Wheel", 2004 Crystal Records, Inc.
Commissioned by Thomas Robertello
A number of 'footprints' work their way into this nine minute composition for flute and piano which was composed for Indiana University Professor of Flute and painter Thomas Robertello. Most prominent is a translation of Professor Robertello's name into a 13 note motive which generates a great deal of the music. [With solfege, 'THoMAS RoBERTELLo' translates to 'BBEAGDBEDBEAA'; 'o' is not used]. One can also find traces of well-known solo flute works by Varèse, Debussy, and Berio mostly in the introduction.
Working on this composition in the aftermath of 9/11, I found it impossible to write music unaffected by those events, as a listener might conclude from some of the more extreme expressions called for, particularly in the introduction and slow middle section another kind of footprint, perhaps. These dissonant, angry expressions are juxtaposed with the light, playful character of the 'Thomas Robertello' music, which is quite diatonic and even optimistic.
Last, but not least, is a rhythmic footprint weaving its way through the entire work: the ubiquitous presence of one underlying tempo. This idea is a reflection of the grid underlying the hazy images of Thomas Robertello's painting, 'Footprints,' which is one of two paintings he gave to me and my wife in exchange for a work for flute and piano (now delivered!).
Crystal CD 712 Gypsy Wheel
Thomas Robertello, flute; Winston Choi, piano