Doug Opel



for two pianos

Written: 1996
Duration: 8:30
Instrumentation: two pianos

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Program Notes

Dilukkenjon was originally composed for large orchestra in 1992/93. I began its orchestration in the fall of 1993 and in the process sensed a dualism. On one hand, it possesses a grandiose style and timbral richness best captured by a full orchestra. On the other, its rhythmic complexities are more conducive to a chamber setting. Because much of the piece was written at the piano, I decided a second, chamber version for 2 pianos was warranted.

The work opens with a driving, syncopated rhythm. A fierce competition immediately ensues as one piano constantly attempts to overpower the other by elaborating, overlapping and interrupting an established line. Several ostinati provide the foundation on which both pianos race to find the quote of an original canzona and a Bach Chorale (Erscheinen is der herrlich Tag, from Cantata VWV67). Obscured, imperfect statements of each are attempted by both pianos before the literal version of the chorale is found by piano 2 just before the final climax. Here, the opening material is overlapped as both pianos attempt to regain dominance. A brief, quiet victory by piano 2 occurs before piano 1 again interrupts and both rush to the end.

The title is derived from the names of my good friends - Diane Bailey, Walter Lukken and Jon Grose - to whom the work is dedicated.

Dilukkenjon was premiered by pianists Nicola Melville and Lisa Campi during the 1994 Scotia Festival of Music, held at Dalhousie University inĀ  Halifax, Nova Scotia, Canada.