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Starlight Ribbons (2013)

For solo piano

Commissioned by the Fromm Music Foundation
First performance: Daniel Schlosberg at Barge Music in New York City 2 May, 2014
Duration: 14 minutes


CD Available
Chamber & Piano Works

This work is available on
Chamber & Piano Works.


Starlight Ribbons runs from 8:56-end

Program Note

Pianist Daniel Schlosberg, Photo by Kirk Richard Smith

Program Note from the Nimbus CD
(Nimbus Alliance NI 6258)

With Starlight Ribbons we reach the most substantial of the piano works to date. With it, Thomas brings all the facets explored in the two previous works to what might be thought of as a culmination or, perhaps more accurately, a new stage of evolution. Unlike the Etudes or Traces, Starlight Ribbons is a single, seamless 14-minute movement where a wide range of moods and processes flow and fuse with the effortless inevitability of a river. Again, several major creative figures from the 20th Century cross perfumes to unpredictable, intoxicating effect: at the head of the score, Thomas characterizes the work as being "like a fusion between Oscar Peterson, Olivier Messiaen, Béla Bartók, Igor Stravinsky and Thelonious Monk". As before, though, Thomas' own persona dominates undiluted in this sustained span of music which never stands still, but moves restlessly through a densely imagined dreamscape of constantly changing auras, now hieratic, now jazzy, now transfixed, now playful, until the ecstatic, efflorescent ending which, paradoxically, seems to point forward to new horizons, new dreamscapes.

— Paul Pellay

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