Violin Concerto, opus 129 (2009)

Thomas Oboe Lee

About this work:

I first heard Irina Muresanu, maybe five years ago, with the Boston Trio in Jordan Hall at the New England Conservatory of Music in Boston, Massachusetts.

I was impressed from the very first note she played on her violin. Subsequently I heard her in a chamber music duo recital with pianist Ya-fei Chuang at the Harvard-Epworth Church in Cambridge, Massachusetts.

I remember saying to myself, “Wow, she has a big, warm sound! One day I would love to write a violin concerto for her!”

Last year I heard her play the Brahms and the Tchaikovsky violin concerti on separate occasions with the Lexington Symphony and the Boston Classical Orchestra.

It was that “wow” factor again …

When I proposed to write a violin concerto for Max Hobart and the Boston Civic Symphony Orchestra, he asked me who I would like to feature as the soloist. I said “Irina Muresanu.” Max said it was a fabulous choice since he has been thinking of engaging Irina to play with the Civic for some time.

Over the past summer I indulged myself in a buying spree of scores and CD recordings of violin concerti. Many composers’ works stood out: concerti by Brahms, Mendelssohn, Sibelius, Stravinsky, Elgar, Prokofiev, Shostakovich, Saint-Saëns, Dvorak, Paganini, Glazunov, Dohnanyi, Nielsen, Spohr, etc. And of course, I did not ignore the gems by Bach and Mozart! The listening to and research of all these concerti masterpieces were quite overwhelming, to say the least. So, by the time I was ready to begin work on my Concerto, I had to put all those scores and CDs aside and begin to find the music in my head. I must confess that it took a while. But eventually I found the seed that brought everything together. And within six weeks, between late September and early November, I completed the short score of the concerto. The orchestration took approximately ten days and the complete work was done on November 21st, 2009.

My Violin Concerto, opus 129, is in two parts. Each part consists of a slow section that is followed by a fast one.

Part I: Largo, Moderato, Allegro ma non troppo.

Part II: Largo, Adagio, Prestissimo.


Year composed: 2009
Duration: 00:26:00
Ensemble type: Orchestra:Orchestra with Soloist(s)
Instrumentation: 2 Flute, 2 Oboe, 2 Clarinet, 2 Bassoon, 4 Horn in F, 2 Trumpet, 3 Trombone, 1 Tuba, 1 Timpani, 1 Strings (General), 1 Harp

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