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Sonata "Simple Virtues"

York, Barbara


  • Ensemble: Flute and Piano
  • Genre: Modern Classical
  • Grade: 5
  • Duration: 12.0 minutes
  • Catalog Number: CM1980

The composer writes

"This piece was written for Dr. Catherine (Kate) Bergman from Emporia State University, KS.  The biggest problem I had in writing this piece is that Kate is so NICE thatthere seemed to be almost nothing to write about!  So I decided to write a piece about being "nice" and what it is nice to be really "nice", especially for a flute player, the flute being such a "nice" instrument in the first place.

The first two movements, "A Cheerful Heart" and "Kindness" are, I think, fairly obvious, but I decided to do something different in the third movement and allow Kate (and our player) to have a temper tantrum and lose her prevalent composure.  In the third movement we hear the teacher instructing  patiently and persistently yet growing, over time, increasingly impatient and frustrated.  By the end she has lost her much of her "niceness" and stamping her foot has a minor fit of temper, still a large step from someone who started out where she did at the beginning of the piece.

I always enjoy, even in my most serious or traditional music, having a little sense of humour lest we all take ourselves too seriously." 

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