Opus 826

The Better Part of Forever (2009)

for Mechanical Piano

Yamaha Disklavier

Duration: 11 min.

Dedication: for Jan Swafford

Publisher: Soundspells Productions

Contact the composer regarding perusal or performance materials.

The Better Part of Forever (2009), a memory piece for mechanical piano, is dedicated to Jan Swafford. The work designed to be performed by a mechanical (player) piano (e.g., Yamaha Disklavier or PianoDisc).

The landscape of this work is colorful and resonant—bell-like melodies and harmonies unfold throughout. The rhythmic abilities of the mechanical piano are often employed to create a complex heterophony between contrapuntal melodic lines and their accompaniment. The piece is specifically inspired by and connected to the final lines of the poem The Long Boat by American poet Stanley Kunitz (1905–2006):

Peace! Peace!
To be rocked by the Infinite!
As if it didn’t matter
which way was home;
as if he didn’t know
he loved the earth so much
he wanted to stay forever.