Twenty-Nine Fireflies, Book IV, Seven Pieces [Xix-Xxv] (2002) for piano solo

Thomas Oboe Lee

About this work:

Ya fei Chuang, piano Program note 29 Fireflies, Book IV, Seven Pieces, xix-xxv, is dedicated to Ya-fei Chuang.

Book IV features my interpretations of the fourth movement from Schoenberg's "Funf Klavierstücke" and Chopin's Prelude Nos. 16 to 21. Tetrachords explored are 0257, 0158, 0136, 0246, 0235, 0268, and 0167, respectively.

Rome Diary: Kristin, my wife, and I were enjoying our fourth stay at the American Academy in Rome between December 20, 2001, and January 10, 2002. The difference this time was that our dear friends from Cambridge, Massachusetts, Martin Brody and Katy Park, were also there. [Marty was Composer-in-residence at the Academy.]

It was a good thing because the Academy could not provide me with a studio this time, and Marty was kind enough to let me use his, the Bass studio, along the Aurelian Wall.

I began these piano pieces soon after our arrival and completed them in another studio, the Casa Rustica, a few days before we returned to the States.

Marty left Rome on January 6th, and Derek Bermel, one of the composer fellows, allowed me to use that studio while he and his girlfriend were traipsing around the island of Sicily.

In between composing, the four of us - Marty, Katy, Kris & I - did some sight-seeing, made several meals together, attended Midnight Mass in the Pantheon on Christmas Eve, and watched the fireworks all over the city of Rome on New Year's Eve from the roof of the American Academy. And, of course, we ate out a lot. There is no such thing as a bad meal in Rome, from the small trattorias to the fancy, upscale restaurants.

We also went on several shopping sprees in the Piazza di Spagna area: clothes, shoes, antique prints. I picked up a few music scores at Ricordi in the Piazza Venezia: Stravinsky's The Rake's Progress and Persephone, among them. All in all, it was a fabulous three weeks in Rome, and the Roman Muse was present: sweet, generous and inspiring as ever. Auguri!

Year composed: 2002
Duration: 00:13:00
Ensemble type: Keyboard:Piano
Instrumentation: 1 Piano
Instrumentation notes: Solo piano in seven short movements.

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