GLASS Philip, Sonata for Violin and Piano (arr. Amy Dickson)

Philip Glass composed this Sonata in 2008 for the violinist Maria Bachmann and pianist Jon Kibonoff who gave the first performance at the Whitaker Center in Harrisburg, Pennsylvania, on 28 February 2009. As a child, Glass had particularly enjoyed listening to records of violin and piano sonatas by Brahms, Fauré and Franck. He recalls that when Maria Bachmann approach him for a new work ‘these musical memories immediately came to mind.’ As well as taking inspiration from earlier music, Glass also worked particularly closely with Bachmann and Kibonoff: ‘I met numerous times with Maria and Jon to hear them play through new movements and revisions’, adding that they ‘provided the support and encouragement that make the work of a composer somewhat easier and most enjoyable.’ 


Amy Dickson subsequently transcribed this sonata for saxophone – an instrument which suits Glass’s music particularly well. It is in three (untitled) movements: the first unfolds at a flowing pace, the second is slower, while the third starts quickly and ends on the simplest of quiet minor chords. 


© Nigel Simeone


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