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Intermezzo D’Anniversaire by Danaë Xanthe Vlasse;
For Advanced Pianist. Approximately 5’40.”
Winner: MTAC Composers Today 2014 First Place in Composition "Advanced Work" Category.
This richly sonorous work is based on the famous Brahms Intermezzo Opus 118 No 2. This particular piece was written on special commission for a 65th Birthday; the recipient of this “surprise gift” cried with joy upon hearing her favorite piano work re-imagined as a sequel which develops the heart-stopping beautiful 2nd theme while paying homage to the original by remaining carefully crafted in the style of Brahms. The second section in this piece is built on specific pitches such that it incorporates a message for the recipient of the commission "Joyeux Anniversaire Karen" ("Happy Birthday Karen"); this text is not apparent to the average listener, and the work can be played and appreciated without this “hidden message” being revealed. (Indeed, the publisher may choose not to publish the “secret” text that accompanies those notes.)
Performance and Teaching notes:
Voicing and pedaling are the greatest challenges for students learning this piece; indeed, even for advanced pianists there are ample opportunities to experiment with varying pedal depths and explore the many voicing possibilities of layered melodies!
This piece may be performed on its own, however it would heighten the experience for the listener to hear the original by Brahms first and then hear this new Intermezzo developing the themes further!