The Creatures of Frietman

Osbon, David [Composer] (2007) The Creatures of Frietman. (duet for flute & piano). score and compact disc.


'The Creatures of Frietman' is a set of 4 miniatures for flute and piano based on four paintings by the contemporary Dutch artist, Frits Frietman. The full range of the flute is exploited, and the harmonic organisation in my recent works, including Symphony No. 2, Andante and Allegro for Strings and the Nelson Overture (all 2005), is further developed. This technique establishes a pitch field with a distinctive intervallic character; the field is then ‘rotated’ by transposing the entire field by the interval between the top note of the field and the bottom note. The resultant pitch field will contain different pitches but retain the same intervallic characteristics at the same time as maintaining a core pitch or pedal tone. This process establishes a set of pitch fields (equal in number to the number of pitches in the original field) which have the unique characteristic of returning to the original pitch field, creating a closed harmonic structure which may be used to organise other compositional parameters, e.g. various levels of strophic form. Establishing intervallic identity and tonal centres in a non-diatonic work aims to create unity across the four movements beyond the use of motivic identifiers. These works are etudes and build upon the tradition of composing works that test the technical parameters of performance and style through stylistic and idiomatic flute writing. The piano writing performs a variety of functions throughout the piece, ranging from being very much in the background (Riding a Dog), to being a catalyst for subsequent flute writing (Trying to Fly), and taking a soloistic role (Le Roi qui Pleure).

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