No 1 Lines, Dots & Crosses (1992)
For violin and piano
First Performance: Bert Mooiman & Frank de Groot, Arnold Schönbergzaal, The Hague
Instrumentation: violin and piano
Lines, Dots & Crosses is the first piece I still acknowledge as a more-or-less mature work. It was written while still a student, sometime during 1991/1992. The work is characterized by a great deal of homorhythmic action between the piano and violin and the presence of the ‘no-nonsense’ titles I henceforward always used: exact verbal summaries of the musical ‘content’.
Lines consists of little, short-breathed melodic cells played high up on the violin’s G- or D-strings to a piano part which only marginally deviates from total homorhythm; Dots consists mostly of short, percussive attacks, similarly shared by piano and violin, which alternate between dry pizzicatos and slurred double-stops and develop rhythmically as the section progresses; Crosses is by far the longest of the three parts – more than half of the total duration – and consists of melodic ‘crossings’ between piano and violin. The movement proceeds in several sections, all initiated by a long violin crescendo, and gradually disintegrates into shorter fragments and more and more silence as it progresses. The work ends with a ‘Coda’, achieving what I thought at the time to be an ‘inevitable’ conclusion.