Flute Sonata No. 1
Flute Sonata No. 1
Sonata No. 1 for Flute and Piano (2002) – 14’
–Commissioned by Jeffrey Khaner
–Premiered 2002 at The Curtis Institute
Sonata No. 1 for Flute and Piano (2002)
I. Con moto
III. Con moto
I was commissioned to write my flute sonata in 2002 by flutist Jeffrey Khaner. We had been both at the Pacific Music Festival in Japan with the faculty resident composer there, Lowell Liebermann, a composer who has written one of the most successful flute sonatas in history. I felt particularly inspired by these great musicians and the remarkably beautiful city of Sapporo. Many of the ideas of the piece were conceived of there, especially in the slow and expansive second movement.
There is also something of a Latin influence in the piece because I was just on my way to Argentina after PMF (that’s a long plane flight!). The outer movements are deeply influenced by traditional Argentinean music; the first is highly rhythmic and articulated, the last uses a child’s folksong about the coming of Spring. Though there are two very different cultural influences here—indicative of our time and the smallness of our world. The first movement is severe and dissonant, but also very rhythmic and driving. The opening notes serve as the seed to the whole piece, and all of the sonorities to follow grow out of them. The middle movement stands in relief of what’s come before: long and more lyrical melodic lines frame the music here, amidst repeating expanding chords that rise and fall. The third movement has much in common with the first, though it is a small “theme and variations” (in one way, the entire piece is that form). The last movement ends with the opposite gesture of the ending of the first to close it all off, a little more wild and a little more fun.
“David Ludwig’s 2002 Sonata, a formidable three movement work” –New Music Box