virginal

Virginal

for solo harpsichord and fifteen instruments
(2002, revised 2010)

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Score Information

Audio
Sample Score Pages
thumbnail of VIRGINAL website excerpts
Duration
16 min.
Premiere
May 21, 2002
Alice Tully Hall, Lincoln Center, New York City
Sara Laimon, harpsichord
Sequitur
Paul Hostetter , conductor
Commissioner
Commissioned by Brandon Fradd for Sara Laimon and Sequitur
Notes
In writing Virginal I thought about Elizabethan composers like John Bull and William Byrd. Their keyboard works were usually sets of variations based loosely on a theme or a progression of harmonies. What I liked most about these pieces was how they were organized: You could hear that you had moved from one section to another not so much because the theme came back, but because the figuration, the nature of the virtuosity changed. I wanted to do this in my piece.

Virginal was commissioned by Brandon Fradd, who perched a copy of the Fitzwilliam Virginal Book on the music stand of a harpsichord in the loft of his home.

Performance History
  • May 21, 2002: Sara Laimon, harpsichord and Sequitur conducted by Paul Hostetter, Alice Tully Hall, Lincoln Center, New York City
  • November 1, 2004: Joanne Pearce Martin, harpsichord and The Los Angeles Philharmonic New Music Group conducted by Alexander Mickelthwate, Walt Disney Concert Hall, Los Angeles
  • March 25, 2007: Harold Meltzer, harpsichord and the American Composers Orchestra conducted by Dennis Russell Davies, Annenberg Center, Philadelphia, Pennsylvania
  • March 26, 2007: Harold Meltzer, harpsichord and the American Composers Orchestra conducted by Dennis Russell Davies, Zankel Hall, Carnegie Hall, New York City
  • December 12, 2008: Sara Laimon, harpsichord and Sequitur conducted by Paul Hostetter, Coolidge Auditorium, Library of Congress, Washington, D.C.
  • September 25, 2010: Aya Hamada, harpsichord and The New Juilliard Ensemble conducted by Joel Sachs, Peter Jay Sharp Theater, Juilliard School, New York City
  • October 14, 2012: Harold Meltzer, harpsichord and Enxemble X conducted by Steven Stucky, Barnes Hall, Cornell University, Ithaca, New York