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Beauchamp-Feuillet No. 2 (2020)

for solo cello scordatura — 6’

Beauchamp-Feuillet No. 2 is the second in a series of dense solo pieces. While they are all inspired by different musics, they share a rhythmic and corporeal vitality that is reminiscent of various ancient folk dance traditions. In this spirit, I named the series after a system of baroque dance notation, imagining that these sounds, too, can be a thought of as a guide for movement.

No. 2 is inspired by the Serbian tradition of gusle troubadours (guslar) and epic poetry. It tries to capture the lightning ornaments and broad phrasing of the gusle in the much heavier instrument that is the cello, which presents interesting challenges for the performer. Similarly, it reimagines the bold intonation of the guslar in various flavors of double stops, which all derive from an invented microtonal mode.

The commission and online premiere performance of this piece

is made possible by American Composers Orchestra with lead funding

from Augusta Gross and Leslie Samuels

Written for Jay Campbell

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