Opus 689

Shining Silhouette: Mt. Mansfield Sunset (2006)

for Clarinet in Eb

Duration: 4.5 min.

Dedication: for Dennis and Stevie on their 10th wedding anniversary

Publisher: Musik Fabrik

Performance materials available from the publisher.

Shining Silhouette: Mt. Mansfield Sunset (2006) for solo Eb clarinet was written for and is dedicated to Dennis Báthory-Kitsz and Stevie Balch on their 10th wedding anniversary.

Although the work is intended as a stand-alone concert piece, there are references intertwined throughout to the couple’s life and work together. The overall inspiration comes from the landscape of the state of Vermont and particularly Mt. Mansfield.

The opening section is flexible and fantastic—forcefully full of energy and life. A deliberate passage leads to the next section—fast and fleeting, with a “quicksilver” character that perhaps reflects the horses of the Argentum Fugit farm in Vermont. The final section recalls the mood of the opening, but more haltingly—bringing into play a brief quotation (which is shown has been related to the musical material all along).  After this aborted recapitulation winds down in a similar way to the first section, a dramatic coda emerges—leading to the final notes of power, brightness and joy.

In terms of musical material, the work is an exploration of the expansion and contraction of a total chromatic row, settling into lyrical tonally centered gestures.