AN EXERCISE IN SELF-CONSTRAINT
Non-conventional Harmony in Poulenc's Sonata for Flute and Piano
On 7 January of this year, Francis Poulenc would have celebrated his 114th birthday. In keeping with the spirit of celebration, this week's feature is devoted to a work of his that I came to know just recently -- and I'm thankful that I did, for it is a stunning addition to the 'under-funded' flute repertoire.
Poulenc's Sonata for Flute and Piano brims with a unique array of harmonic shades -- a delectable palette that owes much to the work's modal backdrop, which is often filled in by a generous helping of chromaticism. Residing just beyond the strictures of diatonic tonality, the music is more or less free from the tonic-dominant tension that binds together the chords of a more traditional harmonic idiom...
Copyright © 21 January 2013
Andrew Schartmann, Connecticut, USA