Large Ensemble: orchestra
Sinfonietta was composed in 1996 while I was living in Finland on a Fulbright Fellowship. The work is cast in two contrasting movements. The first is an extended “Sonata-Allegro” form. The principal theme is presented in the trumpet and strings. The second theme is presented in the oboe with a delicate woodwind accompaniment. A brief closing section introduces a chordal motif. The remainder of the movement elaborates these themes, building to a climactic return of the principal theme. The movement concludes with a fugal coda. The second movement telescopes the remaining three movements of a traditional symphony. It begins with a slow section that juxtaposes eerie polychords with descending string lines. The material is taken over by the woodwinds, then elaborated by the lower strings, building to a graceful dancelike section that serves as the “scherzo”. These two ideas are finally brought together in a triumphant climax, leading to a quicksilver coda. Sinfonietta was first performed by the Omaha Symphony Orchestra as a result of their new music competition.