COMPOSER 1945–2013

Opus 102a

Bontsche Dances (1994/2008)

for Piano

Duration: 4 min.

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This brief dance for piano is an instrumental extract from the composer’s opera based on the Jewish folk legend Bontsche Schweig, best known in the telling by by Isaac Loeb Peretz. In the scene in question, Bontsche is subjected to a heavenly inquisition by angels, but the head inquisitor then chooses to remain silent (as Bontsche himself had been in life). This creates a sudden reduction in tension for all concerned, leading at first to meditative quiet music and then to a dance of joy and heavenly celebration, somewhat in Klezmer-style. (Notes by Carson Cooman)