Program Notes

This music was written as part of the “commissions for pedagogical piece” project, initiated by the Canadian Music Centre and funded by a special Millenium Grant from the Canada Counsil for the Arts.

At first sight, to my (teacher) eyes and my (composer) ears, it seemed sterile to compose obvious musical textures for a pedagogical string quartet: if the interprets should gain new skills and knowledges from this “etude”, it had to offer new music to their fingers and their ears. In spite of the difficulties this bias impose on the actual realization of the piece by non-professional musicians, I sincerely hope my pedagogical goal is fulfilled.

In concrete terms, this “etude” propose the learning of the diverse expressive uses of the quintoplet; to that extend, the title refers to the “base 5” numeration system. This essentialy express itself in a musical discourse based upon the dialectical juxtaposition of harmonic objects and contrapuntal lines.

This music is dedicated to the great violist, Mr. Robert Verebes.