beach whistle: Music by Christopher Butterfield




This concert spans thirty years of composition, the oldest piece being from 1983, and the most recent from last year. I, more than anyone, will be fascinated to hear them all together — will they resemble each other in any way at all, or is each one completely independent of the other? Could the same person who wrote Five Songs have written Lullaby? Is there anything that could be considered common to both, or indeed all five pieces? The organizing principal of the concert is music for strings, with the exception of the Five Songs. I’m surprised to realise how strongly narrative drives the music, with the possible exception of fall, which sticks to a recursive structure, any possible phrase of which is subverted by arbitrary dynamics, forcing the music to exist as a multifaceted object, rather than expressive time.

I’m most grateful to the Bozzini Quartet for agreeing to perform this concert; to Owen Underhill, for making it financially possible for me to be here through the SOCAN Foundation; and to The School for the Contemporary Arts at SFU, for providing the space for the concert and the composers’ workshop taking place this week.