Horn & Piano
Abendlied, or “evening song,” is a simple work for horn and piano, taking its inspiration from the Romantic lieder of German repertoire, as well as other solo horn repertoire of the time (Strauss’ Notturno, for example). The piece opens with a plaintive, falling arpeggiation in the piano, setting the landscape for the horn’s entrance with a lamenting melody. As the work unfolds, the harmonic material mimics the vivid but delicate colors of a sunset, complemented by the sounds of evening bells wafting on a breeze. A sudden whirling dance emerges, invoking fond recollections of the day past, but yields, once again, to the sounds of bells tolling – this time darker and more distant yet. An obscured memory of the opening theme presents itself once more, eventually winding down to a gentle rest on a suspended chord. The piano closes the work with a slow, nebulous arpeggiation leaving the listener to wonder what lies beyond the falling of dusk.