Combinations for String Quartet

Tom Johnson

Combinations for String Quartet has been performed in Berlin, Montréal and San Francisco…

The piece contains five movements, and each of these contains all the combinations of something. As usual, I wanted the music to know what it was doing, to be correct and complete in a rigorous sense, and this is one way of achieving this. The theory of combinations is a totally explored mathematical discipline, as we have known for more than a century how to calculate all kinds of combinations and probabilities, and how to prove all of this. So what I say about my composition can not have fundamental significance for mathematics. I can, however, demonstrate that new questions arrive when one wants to go inside some set of combinations, to see how they come together, to observe the many symmetries within them, to find the best sequence for them, to consider how they might sound, to turn them into music.

Premiere

  • March 21, 2004, Maerzmusik — Berliner Festspiele, Berlin (Germany)

Combinations for String Quartet

  • Tom Johnson
  • Year of composition: 2003
  • Instrumentation: string quartet
  • Commission: Quatuor Bozzini, MaerzMusik

Movements

On disc

Concerts

21 Marc 2004
CoatesIvesJohnson
In person
Berlin (Germany)
16 May 2004
8:00 pm
Série QB
JohnsonRizzutoSmithTenney
In person
Montréal (Québec)
20 Octo 2007
8:00 pm
Série QB
FargionJohnsonNewmanTrunk
In person
Montréal (Québec)
6 Marc 2010
8:00 pm
Johnson
In person
San Francisco (California, USA)

Broadcasts

Date Work Program
Friday, March 4, 2022 Tom Johnson, Combinations for String Quartet (2003) [Excerpt] Fables for Your Microscope — 122 / Fables for Your Microscope (Canada)