voice of the hidden waterfall (2017)

Bb clarinet, piano
7 min.
Published by Fennica Gehrman

This piece is the result of one of the best artistic cross-fertilizations I’ve been party to. In 2016, the bassoonist and painter Bridget Allaire paid me the supreme compliment of creating a work inspired by an orchestral piece of mine that she’d premiered, The return of light – a beautiful canvas which now appears on the cover of the recording. Bridget later offered the original painting to me, with the suggested payment being a short recital piece as a birthday present for her husband, the clarinetist Harri Mäki.

I’d recently bought another painting of hers, and when Bridget delivered it to me, Harri commented wistfully that he’d liked having it in their house and would miss seeing it. I felt badly about robbing him of a work of art he’d enjoyed, so I decided to give it back to him in musical form. The resulting piece attempts to capture the painting’s alternations of spaciousness and effusive denseness, and the juxtaposition of light and dark in its colors. The insouciant clarinet line rarely takes much notice of the piano’s activity, preferring to observe it from a distance while musing rhapsodically. Only progressively does the clarinet drift into stasis and contemplation, as if finally truly seeing the painting for the first time.

voice of the hidden waterfall is dedicated warmly to Harri Mäki and Bridget Allaire.