Mark Gresham | 24 JUN 2020
Number 5 in a series of audio and video presentations curated by by EarRelevant’s publisher and principal writer Mark Gresham as part of his “Composer’s Notebook.” Several of our writers are also composers, and in this process we’d like to introduce you to some of their music during this time in which we are absent live concerts.
A native of Atlanta, Georgia, composer Curtis Bryant first wrote for EarRelevant in May 2019. As a composer, Bryant’s catalog exhibits quite a range of output. Most notable are his two full-length operas: Zabette (1999) and The Secret Agent (2013), but also orchestral, chamber, and vocal music as well as composing music for film and video games. He has garnered seven Southern Regional Emmy Award nominations for his original music for television.
In the liner notes of the Music by Southern Composersalbum, Bryant had the following to say about his Sonata for Cello and Piano:
The first movement is introduced by a double-dotted figure which, after a period of tonal uncertainty, leads to a romantic theme in E minor, marked “Brooding.” Another transition marked “Calmly” leads to a second group of themes in F major and D minor derived from the opening motives. A brief, rambling development leads back to the full recapitulation in E minor, The second movement, Interlude picks up where the first leaves off and then presents a new theme marked “Singing” started first in the piano, then answered simply by the cello. This leads with only momentary pause to the faster third movement in E major with its playful and childlike themes. A fugal development leads to the sonata recapitulation.