2nd Concerto for Marimba and Orchestra

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Marcin Błażewicz

General Info

Year of Published: 2008
Publisher: Edition Svizer
Duration: 00:25:00
Level: Advanced
Price: €60.00


Marimba and Symphony Orchestra

Program Notes

The 2nd Concerto for Marimba and Orchestra consists of three contrasting movements, whose pattern (fast-slow-fast) follows the traditional model of the genre.

The first movement opens with a powerful orchestral tutti, after which the timpani punctuate regular rhythm, soon giving way to a solo marimba. The musical material develops, with a gradual rise in tension. Numerous solo displays of the marimba play the important role in this movement. Pervasive motorism and mobility are the main features of Błażewicz’s music. The solo instrumental part is treated here on a par with the orchestra, even though it differs greatly. In some respects the first movement is reminiscent of a sonata allegro with the solo cadenza of the marimba at the climax and a reprise of the opening motif towards the end. The overall mood is of gloom and anxiety.

The second movement opens with a dialogue between a subtle marimba solo and the timpani, which now and then interrupt the narration of the marimba. It is only after some time that the orchestra takes over the narrative thread. Sections marked by a nostalgic mood are followed by fragments of dramatic expression. The second movement is contrasted in terms of expression, rhythm, and timbre. References to the opening motif of the first movement contribute to the thematic integration of the whole composition. Further on, the middle movement takes on a dramatic expression, with the percussion and brass assigned special importance. Dark, gloomy and funereal sounds can be heard and the overall mood is one of anxiety.

The spectacular third movement is more diversified in terms of texture and timbre than the preceding movements, but has an equally strong nervous energy. Continuous pulsation and sharp interventions by the orchestral tutti, cutting across the marimba part, are the dominant features. The composer uses the idiom of Polish mountain folk music, although no quotation from the folklore can be found. It’s rather folklore abstracted and created by the composer. All in all, the Concerto offers fine opportunities for a virtuoso display from the soloist and demonstrates the composer’s orchestral skill.

Works for Percussion by this Composer

Template:Błażewicz, Marcin Works