Wind & Ice

A String Trio


After the study of Béla Bartók's “String Quartets,” I wished to compose a piece of similar intensity, and recalled the experience of a winter ice storm which wreaked havoc on the forest surrounding our home. That night was spent listening in the dark, fearful that the destruction might also include our home. A night of strong winds, buffeting ice laden trees, created a scene which became visible in the brilliant sunlight of the dawn. Giant pines, shorn of their tops and toppled, were covered by a contrasting crystalline coating of ice. After the tumult of the nighttime darkness, it was surreally light and silent. This experience provided the inspiration for this composition. To create a composition of contrasting sections, an AB form, I chose to began with a contrasting "wind", the languid, gentle breeze of a calm summer day. The quotation of MacDowell's “To a Wild Rose” from his Woodland Sketches, evolved as I recognized in the natural harmonics, used to convey the calm of the post storm dawn, this familiar melody from childhood.

Andrew Eng, violin
Russell Wilson, viola
Catherine Stephen, cello