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Pavane, Galliard and Variations (2009/2010)

Pavane Galliard and Variations is a transcription for Standing Wave of keyboard works by William Byrd (ca. 1540-1623), particularly Pavana - the Earle of Salisbury, a "mash" of the two galliards which follow it, and A Ground. The pavane and galliard were typically paired together, as were these two by the composer. The former is a processional dance; the latter a "leaping" dance. I sang Byrd's music in choirs when I was a teenager, but came to know his keyboard music only recently, through the recommendation of musicologist David Metzer. In taking up Byrd's dances, I layer, fragment, extend, and colour the originals in the manner of a fantasia, another genre in which Byrd excelled. The first movement was written at the request of Arne Eigenfeldt and was performed by Standing Wave in May 2009 as part of a dance concert; the second and third movements were commissioned by Standing Wave throughout the generosity of the BC Arts Council and first performed in May 2010. The piece is dedicated to Standing Wave and David Metzer.

- Rodney Sharman