Abigail’s Jig, op. 10 no. 2a
This lively piece for flute and piano was composed in 1980 to celebrate the birth of Abby, the composer’s daughter. The piece attempts to capture the atmosphere of an Irish jig as played by a piper, with a harmonically straightforward piano part, which uses a mixture of ‘vamping’ and melodic imitation of the flute part. The introduction is intended to be humorous and rather musically misleading, openly parodying the ‘cowboy’ music of Aaron Copland. Modal harmony helps to create the mood of pseudo-folk music.
Cantilena, Op. 11b
Cantilena tries to capture a popular flavour, borrowing freely from pop and jazz styles: primary and secondary chords are used in arpeggiated piano figures, as mainstream ballads might do; pedal notes are a feature, especially on the tonic note; and a ‘bluesy’ style emerges in the third main theme. A pseudo-rock style is twice used in the climax section, which acts as a song-like chorus. Cantilena is in the key of D major overall, but even the introduction uses ‘wrong note’ harmony (notably flattened sevenths) to produce ambiguous tonality. The piece demonstrates a range of tone colour for the flute across a wide melodic range. Written originally for alto sax in 1987, the piece was arranged for flute in 1994.
Five Short Pieces, Op. 9a
This set of movements for flute and piano was originally arranged in 1985, and revised in 2008. The five pieces are elaborate transcriptions of To One, five songs to poems by Christina Rees, which convey the countless moods associated with a relationship.