Piano Phantasy
after Mozart K. 475

Instrumentation:

piano

Duration:

13' 40"

Year of composition:

1992 (revised 2017)

Premiere:

Andrew Ball, The Oxford Festival of Contemporary Music, 3 November 1993

Holywell Music Room, Oxford

Recorded by:

In modelling my Piano Phantasy on Mozart's Fantasia in C minor, K. 475, I was particularly attracted by the implications of the sudden and unexpected modulations of Mozart's opening bars.  The stability of the tonic is weakened to such an extent that when the dominant key is finally reached it carries little of its usual reaffirming tension, and seems but a remote tonal area within the continuously shifting tonality.  The writer and pianist Charles Rosen commented that 'its opening material offers, within the classical style, no way of continuing without the introduction of new material, new tonalities, and new tempi'.

My Piano Phantasy is also centered on a sort of C minor, and follows a similar tonal and formal trajectory in its combination of the symmetries of classical phrasing and forms with a rhapsodic, almost improvisatory feel.

Piano Phantasy is the earliest piece in the of gold and shadows cycle of compositions.  It was revised and extended in preparation for the LORELT recording of the entire cycle.

 

S.M.

Ronan Magill (piano), concert performance, excerpt