Motion (1998) by Ross Bauer
for violin, cello, and piano
West Coast premiere

Motion, commissioned by and dedicated to the Triple Helix Trio, was written in the spring and summer of 1998. They premiered it on December 5, 1998 at Brandeis University. The piece is in three movements played without pause.

The first movement begins with a statement, played in octaves by the strings, which will prove to be important throughout. This two measure statement is responded to by a hushed five note chord in the piano. This opening, fragmented and minus its first two notes, returns to end the piece. The first movement is full of octave and double octave tunes by the strings. It ends with a high, lyrical cello line, which provides a transition to the second movement.

The second movement, which has a restrained, inward quality for most of its short duration, begins with solo piano. Lois Shapiro's expressively lyrical playing was very much in my ear while writing this passage. The sense of dialogue between piano and strings, somewhat downplayed in the first movement, comes to the fore here.

The third movement, perhaps the most wide-ranging of the three, has a strong sense of pulse much of the time. In 12/8 and 9/8 meter for most of its length, it switches to fast 4/4 near the end in an octave passage reminiscent of that which occurred near the end of the first movement. This music is meant to tie the piece together through the completion of what was left unfinished at the conclusion of the first movement.

— R. B.    

[from program for April 29, 2002 concert]