Contraflow

Colin Matthews (1946)

Contraflow 1992

1(=afl+picc).1(=ca).1(=bcl).1(=cbsn) - 1110 - perc(1): BD(with foot ped)/hi-hat/4 tom-t/3 tam-t - pno - 2 vln.vla.vlc.db
Duration 
12
Publisher 

Contraflow might be compared to a journey in which the return half is seen in a different perspective. Formally the work consists of a scherzo and trio, where the expected reprise turns into a slow movement in which the scherzo is recapitulated in reverse, with seemingly little resemblance to the original. Within this overall framework there is another process at work – a sequence of tiny concertinos for each member of the ensemble, beginning halfway through the scherzo with second violin, trombone and oboe; then flute, trumpet and viola; in the trio, clarinet, horn and cello; and in the slow movement, contrabassoon, percussion and bass, with finally a duo for first violin and piano. Contraflow lasts around 12 minutes: it was commissioned by the Huddersfield Festival and the London Sinfonietta with funds made available by the Arts Council of Great Britain, and is dedicated to ‘my friends in the London Sinfonietta, especially Rosemary, and to Diego Masson.’

Colin Matthews

Performances 
29.11.92 St Paul's Hall, Huddersfield: London Sinfonietta/Diego Masson
30.11.92 Scunthorpe: London Sinfonietta/Diego Masson
1.12.92 Queen Elizabeth Hall, London: London Sinfonietta/Diego Masson
2.12.92 Concertgebouw, Amsterdam: London Sinfonietta/Diego Masson
15.1.93 Rome, Italy: London Sinfonietta/Lothar Zagrosek
24-27.1.94 Norwegian tour (Oslo, Kristiansand, Bergen, Harstad): London Sinfonietta/Elgar Howarth
15.6.94 Aldeburgh Festival: London Sinfonietta/Diego Masson
13.1.96 Symphony Hall, Birmingham: Birmingham Contemporary Music Group/Daniel Harding
1.5.99 Philharmonic Hall, Liverpool: Ensemble 10:10/Baldur Brönnimann
15.7.05 Snape Maltings Concert Hall: Contemporary Performance & Composition Course/Diego Masson
16.6.06 Snape Maltings Concert Hall: Britten-Pears Alumni I/Ryan Wigglesworth
4.12.07 RNCM, Manchester: RNCM New Ensemble
14.3.08 Birmingham Conservatoire: Thallein Ensemble/Nicholas Cleobury
6.11.13 St George's Hall, Liverpool: Ensemble 10:10/Clark Rundell
22/24.10.15 Mexico City & Guanajuato, Mexico: London Sinfonietta/Garry Walker
1
Flute
doubling piccolo and alto flute
1
Oboe
doubling cor anglais
1
Clarinet
doubling bass clarinet
1
Bassoon
doubling contrabassoon
1
Horn
1
Trumpet
1
Trombone
1
Percussion
bass drum (with foot pedal), hi-hat, 4 tom-toms, 3 tam-tam
1
Violin
1
Violin II
1
Viola
1
Cello
1
Double bass
1
Piano
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