Quaternity (piano reduction)

Price: 
$75.00

Quaternity (piano reduction)

Arranger/Composer: 

Broughton, Bruce

Item Code:
27152
Publisher: 
C. Alan Publications

Quaternity is a four-movement suite for trombone solo and band written for famed trombonist Joe Alessi. A quaternity is simply a group of four, but a group that represents wholeness. This particular quaternity is one that represents the classical elements of antiquity: earth, air, fire and water with musical connections that are often subjective.

Program Notes

Quaternity is a four-movement suite for trombone solo and band written for famed trombonist Joe Alessi. A quaternity is simply a group of four, but a group that represents wholeness. This particular quaternity is one that represents the classical elements of antiquity: earth, air, fire and water with musical connections that are often subjective.

I. Earth
The piece begins with a statement by the trombone which is repeated through all of the subsequent movements. The theme is somewhat imposing and serious. Earth, after all, is where life begins, takes place and ends; it is the literal ground. This theme, which is often used as a sort of leitmotif, represents the connective unity of the whole. The movement quickly gives way to a lighter theme, as a sort of reminder that along with the many other physical elements that the earth contains, there are also emotional elements, such as happiness and joy.

II. Air
This movement refers initially to the silence, omnipresence and transformations of air, the literal breath of life. Much of the movement is somewhat austere in its stillness. Musically, the trombone plays a theme over a modified chaconne, a set of harmonic variations. The solo theme is phrased freely independent of the structured accompaniment and soon is joined by a saxophone in a free duet. The placid air is eventually modified as wind and storm.

III. Fire
The element of fire is characterized by quickness, changeability and surprise. It is capable of warmth and terror, comfort and destruction. The trombone is muted throughout much of this movement, creating a sense of anxiety and distraction.

IV. Water
The final piece begins with a moving figure that gradually gets faster and more intense. Over this movement appears a strong theme from the trombone which alternates with the Quaternity theme from the beginning. One of the characteristics of water is that its flow is unstoppable and it gathers itself as it moves, growing from a streamlet to a river, carving the ground as it creates its own path. This particular musical stream grows to an eventual slowing down that leads to a quick conclusive coda. The opening leitmotif ends the piece.

Quaternity was written for trombonist Joe Alessi.

Grade Level: 6
Copyright: 2020
Duration: 24:30

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Instrumentation

Trombone
Piano