Opus 10 – Patterns for Piano Four Hands

Recorded on 01/17/13 by Travis Mallett (Primo) and Jered Kostenko (Secundo) at the WSU Recording Studio.

Program Notes

Sometimes it is prudent to take a moment and realize the small changes in life, patterns, and relatedness of events. These are the content of this piano duet. I often enjoy sitting at the piano when I have become frustrated or stressed and play “nice sounds” that don’t necessarily have any well-defined trajectory, aren’t incredibly calculated, and are relaxing to listen to. This piece is in essence, a collection of some of those sounds, organized in patterns that change over the course of the piece.

Patterns for Piano Four Hands is a somewhat post-minimalistic piece that includes a few short episodes of related variation. A unique feature of this piece is the notation used: Rather than write all the notes explicitly, pitch sets for the accompaniment are provided to be played “from hand-to-hand but in time.” This allows an almost aleatoric aspect to the performance, yet the performers remain in complete control. The performers are also instructed to bring out patterns in the accompaniment and “intentionally repeat” them. Another important aspect of this piece is the use of time. Time between sections, repeated figures and gestures is not notated. The performers decide when to move forward, creating a dynamic aspect of unpredictability for the listener and the opportunity for the performers to savor their favorite moments in the piece.

Sheet Music

Travis Mallett, Opus 10 – Patterns for Piano Four Hands

Video Score

Travis Mallett, Opus 10 – Patterns for Piano Four Hands from Travis Mallett on Vimeo.