Canon for Michael Byron

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I met the composer Michael Byron in autumn of 2008 in Dublin. I was involved in producing the Irish premiere of his iridescent solo piano work, Dreamers of Pearl, and Michael had travelled from New York to be present for the performance. Seldom have I experienced such positivity. Michael’s enthusiasm and quiet wisdom was a tonic.

During his stay in Dublin, Michael attended a rehearsal of a string trio I had written. Afterwards, he spoke to me about my work. It put him in mind of Anton von Webern, he said – particularly the 1927 string trio. Michael quoted Webern: ‘In this music, every thing is a principal idea.’

Canon for Michael Byron is a celebration of the composer, both his music and his character. It is also a celebration of that endeavour, present in the work of Webern and Byron, to give every part the same integrity as the whole. Webern, again, put it beautifully: ‘Comprehensibility is the highest law of all. Unity must be there. There must be a means of ensuring it.’

Sub-title: String Quartet # 2
Instrumentation: 2 violins, viola, cello
Duration: circa 5 minutes.
Date of composition: 2008
Score: Please email to obtain the latest score.