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Three Etudes for Viola

for Nadia Sirota
Viola & Tape, 19'

These three etudes may be performed in any order, all together, or singularly.

The pre-recorded material for these e?tudes should be mixed in such a way that the viola rides in the middle of the texture. Etude 2, however, should favor the solo viola. While we have had successful performances with the tape coming from a PA and the viola unamplified, the ideal scenario has the viola closely amplified with a clip-on microphone, such as the DPA 4099V, or similar.

E?tudes 1 and 1a require a metronomic relationship to the pulse, whereas Etude 2 requires a more flexible approach.
These Etudes were written for my friend Nadia Sirota. They are designed as performance pieces as well as practice e?tudes for dealing with the messy fifth-based string crossings my harmonic language sometimes outlines. Etudes 1 and 1A also concern themselves with the messy business of grand pause rests, or silences, in the context of highly rhythmic music.

The pre-recorded material was engineered and produced by Dan Bora, and is available through St Rose Music Publishers or Chester-Novello. Recordings of Etudes 1 and 1a are available on Nadia Sirota’s First Things First (New Amsterdam), E?tude 2 is recorded under the alternate title Varied Titles (Bedroom Community/ Decca) and E?tude 3 is available on Nadia Sirota’s Baroque (Bedroom Community).

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