“6 Fugitive Memories” were commissioned by and dedicated to the pianist Nadia
Shpachenko. These short miniatures represent six dedications to composers who have anniversaries in 2016, the year when Nadia premiered this work. I decided to remove my compositional style and instead recall through quotations and allusions the pieces of composers to whom each miniature is dedicated. Thus, “Composition No. 1” quotes Galina Ustvolskaya’s (1919–2006) “Composition No. 1” (Dona nobis pacem) for piccolo, tuba and piano, and stylistically alludes to her Piano Sonata No. 6.“Fugitive No. 2” pictures Sergei Prokofiev (1891–1953) and his piano works (“Visions Fugitives;” Piano Sonatas No. 2, 3). No “N” is a portrait of Morton Feldman (1926–1987), and alludes to the structural principles of his “Vertical Thoughts” and “Triadic Memories.” “Quasi una ciaccona” is a dedication to Sofia Gubaidulina (b. 1931), and quotes her “Chaconne.” “Cimbalom Játék” (“Playing Cimbalom”) is a dedication to György Kurtág (b. 1926), who often used this national folk instrument in his music. The title “Debutie” combines composers’ last names and quotes Claude Debussy’s (1862–1918) Prelude “Voiles” and Éric Satie’s (1866–1925) “Gymnopedie No. 1” in the manner of a careless collage, concluding this cycle of memories.
6 Fugitive Memories: “Debutie”
Nadia Shpachenko’s latest Reference Recordings release Quotations & Homages features World Premiere recordings of works for solo piano, for piano and electronics, for speaking pianist, for piano with extended techniques, and collaborative works for 6 pianists (performed with RayKallay Duo, HOCKET and Genevieve Feiwen Lee) inspired by a variety of earlier composers and works. These fascinating new pieces come from eight notable modern composers: Tom Flaherty, Missy Mazzoli, Vera Ivanova, James Matheson, Nick Norton, Adam Borecki, Daniel Felsenfeld and Peter Yates.