The Mirror Suite (four-hands)
Advanced duet for four-hands, one piano. Keys of A minor, and C major. Three movements, 38 pages.
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"Kaleidoscope" is the first movement of "The Mirror Suite". The piece opens with some fun percussive extended piano techniques. There are a variety of themes in this piece, including a quirky opening chromatic motif, a militaristic anthem, a restless middle section, and an abstract "searching" section, which sounds like the hands are asking each other questions. I thought that this concept of themes circulating in and out would lend well to the title, Kaleidoscope. This piece does well as a stand-alone, and does not necessarily need to be programmed with the other movements.
"A Pretty Face" is the second movement of "The Mirror Suite". I wrote a poem to assist in inspiration for this piece; you can check it out here: https://www.kirstenbeckermusic.com/post/using-poetry-to-inspire-melody) "A Pretty Face" has three sections, each with a variation on melody and rhythm. The rhythmic scheme slows down as each section progresses: going from a swirling sixteenth note pulse, to a lilting dotted eighth/sixteenth flow, to a dramatic finish with quarter note chords. This piece is deceptively challenging to put together, particularly with the pedaling and balance between hands. I tried to write very specific dynamics to assist in this.
"Funhouse" is the third movement of "The Mirror Suite". When you think of a funhouse, you think of warped mirrors, crazy colors, and surprises around every corner. I tried to infuse this piece with each of those elements. The A section is startlingly raucous and rhythmically challenging to put together, but rewardingly fun to play. The B section features some of the "piano percussion" first introduced in movement one of the suite: "Kaleidoscope". It has a laid-back bluesy vibe, which complements the energy of the A section. The piece really ends with a bang, so try to pull back on measures 144 and 148 in order to give the last page the spotlight.