Recently I’ve tried my hand at writing sonatas: multi-movement works for solo instrument with piano.
It’s a bit intimidating to write sonatas, since they are very “Serious Music” – basically the solo instrumental equivalent of a symphony. Still, I’m determined not to get too hoity-toity. As with everything I write, I want the music in my sonatas to be beautiful, and enjoyable to listen to, and a pleasure to perform. I am constantly reminding myself to write like Handel, who was able to write beautiful, serious music, without letting it get stuffy or academic or esoteric.
I’ve approached a few Niagara-area musicians and asked them if I could write them a sonata. My most enthusiastic response so far has been from Gordon Cleland, principal cellist for the Niagara Symphony Orchestra, who responded very positively and has since programmed my Cello Sonata #1 in a recital in October. He’ll play it along with a Bach and a Beethoven sonata (it’s a little terrifying to have my work programmed with Bach and Beethoven!!) so I’m obviously very excited about hearing a musician of his caliber performing my work.
Here are the sonatas that I have written so far: