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Solo Works

Five Movements for solo piano (2017) was composed in extremely complicated and -from today’s perspective- funny conditions. At that time, I was a music teacher in a Greek primary school (an invaluable experience that I had for almost a decade), I challenged myself to try and compose a piece for piano where all material will be generated between the breaks of the lessons! This task required a lot of concentration and very rapid thinking but I was feeling very excited to urge myself to try to speak musically in this very limited time span. At that time, my son Iason Maronidis was in love with the music of George Gershwin and I am always in love with the music of Pierre Boulez. To some extent, I feel this piece is a compressed convolution between those two so different styles! Isn’t a composer supposed to be a filter on (his/her) reality?

Dedicated to my son Iason Maronidis, for being a startling light of hope.

Jana Luksts, piano
Mariano Wainsztein, director
Daniel Baruch, sound
George Katehis, editing, production

Happy Birthday, Variations is a birthday gift for my wife’s, Gundega Smite, 40th birthday! While I was thinking about the passing of time, I recalled a poem by Konstantinos Kavafis:

Days to come stand in front of us
like a row of lighted candles—
golden, warm, and vivid candles.

Days gone by fall behind us,
a gloomy line of snuffed-out candles;
the nearest are smoking still,
cold, melted, and bent.

I don’t want to look at them: their shape saddens me,
and it saddens me to remember their original light.
I look ahead at my lighted candles.

Candles, Konstantinos Kavafis

This image of a single line of candles representing our lives has always haunted me. I decided that it would be a more interesting challenge to compose a one-line, monophonic piece for the “most” polyphonic instrument, the piano. The difficulty was, that I wanted to make a birthday gift but my idea was relying on a very depressive truth. I tried to find a balance between those two poles. Black humor and optimism.

Prob_My Berio was composed in 2002 and got its premiere 17 years later by the flutist Andreas Papakostas-Smyris! The idea was to analyze the Sequenza for solo flute of Luciano Berio and then re-synthesize a new piece. For this task, Markovian Chains of first-order were implemented in Max/MSP and all musical parameters (except rhythm) were analyzed. After a few experiments, the data for synthesizing the new piece were ready and the piece got its final shape.