Barney Childs was my mentor and then friend from the early 1970’s until his death in the late 90’s. His music is fragmentary, elliptical, enigmatic. I always found something to like in his work – ideas that had a quality of compression and real potential. Such is the case with the “thematic” fragment that I borrowed from his solo piano piece “Heaven to Clear When Day Did Close.” In my fantasy the theme explodes into a virtuoso tenor sax extravaganza. This is “Classical” music but with strong reference to bebop. The string quartet parts are demanding and require a seasoned and committed ensemble.
Maslanka Weekly highlights excellent performances of David Maslanka’s music from around the web. This week, we feature three of David’s “lesser-known” chamber works: Quintet for Winds No. 4, Heaven to Clear When Day Did Close: Fantasy on a Theme of Barney Childs, and Arise!