1998 • 9 minutes • Orchestra (2222/2200/pno/1 pc/strings)
Madigan is the second in a series of works (the first being my 'Endangered Worlds' for wind sextet) which explores the 'revisiting' of musical masterworks. Mozart's 21st Piano Concerto (and especially the second movement) is strongly associated with Bo Wideberg's 1967 movie Elvira Madigan and is heard so often in other movies and on television as well as in restaurants, shopping malls, doctor's offices, etc, that it is difficult to listen to this piece without thinking of these other contexts, ie, as it would have been heard in Mozart's time.
'Madigan' conjures up these other worlds while making reference to Mozart's work. The work is not a concerto but does use a similar orchestration to Mozart's. Ironic and at times humorous, it also quotes from the piece (recontextualizing well known passages and gestures), while also exploring other more impressionistic textures.
The work was commissioned by the Kitchener-Waterloo Symphony with the assistance of the Canada Council.