Nocturne and Fugue in D flat major - (2012)
for Lynn Rodolico
novel, Two Seas (Lynn Rodolico,
Editions, 2012, available at the Amazon booksellers websites) was
sent to me from Sicily by its author. (For more on the author, please visit
She had known my mother for many years so long ago, and wrote me of her
affection. My mother had many friends from around the world, as from her
work in youth choirs and as a teacher. She wrote of this memory in her
novel, "Mammacita was the choir director of the Methodist Church when I was
a little girl. She also directed the children's choir. She let me sit beside
her and turn the pages while she played the piano for the older children.
she gave me my first solo when I was six years old." We share this memory
across time in a way, for when I was small I sometimes would sit on the
bench beside my mother while she accompanied choirs in concerts. Life is
most interesting in its many commonalities.
Lynn and Nino Rodolico
her novel, Lynn quotes lines from Longfellow's poem, "Between the dark and
the daylight, / When the night is beginning to lower...." Among the images
of her new home in Sicily are images of darkness and daylight in the time of
day, as in the change of seasons, as in the passage of life to death. Such
images and toying with a rudimentary musical thought which occurred, I began
this small work.
moment of waiting and and an a piacere introduction precede a
long-lined melody accompanied by the flux between duple and triple rhythms.
The nocturne moves from the higher reaches of the keyboard and into the
depths and darker colors before a peaceful cadence. A tempo marking is
absent in this setting, suggesting the performer might find that tempo and
rubato feeling as best suits the moment, the venue and the player's
reflection on the sonorities. Similarly, the score is under-marked in
cadence in the tonic major is extended into some polytonal colors before the
announcement of the composite fugue subject which shifts the tonal colors
into the minor as well as into some chromaticism. As with the nocturne, the
fugue's various permutations move across a harmonic landscape from high to
low. Again the duple-triple dichotomy carries some remembrance of the
nocturne's more calm moments.
pages, circa 10' 30" - an MP3 demo is here:
is available as a free PDF download, though any major commercial
performance or recording of the work is prohibited without prior arrangement
with the composer. Click on the graphic below for this piano score.
Nocturne and Fugue in D flat major