COMPOSER 1945–2013

Opus 105

Variations on a Theme by Frank Martin (1996)

for Orchestra

Duration: 15 min.

Dedication: to Max Schubel

Recording: Toccata TOCC0710

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Variations on a Theme by Frank Martin was written in 1996 and is based on a small theme by the Swiss composer that Rosner had found “irresistibly haunting” for many decades. The theme is a very brief passage from Martin’s Der Cornet (1945), a large monodrama for mezzo-soprano and small orchestra on a poem by Rainer Maria Rilke. Rosner uses the theme purely as a “found object” for his own musical conception. The theme is first presented (in Rosner’s treatment) and is then followed by five contrasting variations. The work is dedicated to the composer and record producer Max Schubel (1932–2010), who had produced one of the first recordings of Rosner’s music. Martin was Schubel’s favorite composer. (Notes by Carson Cooman)