For: Duet
page one of Triptych

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Year of composition
Difficult (Grades 7+)
8 minutes
Modern classical music
License details
For anything not permitted by the above licence then you should contact the publisher first to obtain permission.

Written in 2017, Triptych is a duet for two saxophones lasting around 8¼ minutes. Each player has two saxophones to play: the first plays alto and soprano whereas the second plays baritone and tenor.

The title refers to the common definition of triptych as referring to a work of art (usually a panel painting) that is divided into three sections. In the case of a panel painting, these sections are hinged together. In the case of this duet, there are three main parts: Allegro, Andante and another Allegro played without a break.

Much of the music circles around a few notes and the opening Allegro begins with two notes for alto saxophone and just one for the baritone. Gradually more notes are added until short thematic material starts to emerge. The rhythms are mainly irregular, with much of this section being in 7/8 time. The theme is expanded in a slower central interlude.

The Andante section is for soprano and baritone instruments and again only two, then three notes are boldly stated. The three notes become an ostinato and gradually the music moves forward expressively. The rhythms are generally much simpler, with most of the section being in 3/4 time.

The final Allegro is in a bouncy 6/8 time for soprano and tenor instruments, with a theme centring around 4 notes, and then gradually expanding. A short Andante reminds us of the central section and, later, a fragment of the opening section is stated, before the piece accelerates to an exciting conclusion.

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