Esa-Pekka Salonen: YTA III
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Esa-Pekka Salonen's YTA III for solo Cello.
This work was written for Anssi Karttunen, who gave the first performance at the Musiikin aika Festival, Viitasaari, Finland, on 23rd July 1987.
'I began to work on the YTA series in 1982. The first piece was for solo alto flute, the second for piano
and the third for cello. The title, ‘Yta’, is a Swedish word meaning ‘surface’. I wanted to write very
demanding virtuoso music, where the surface is extremely busy, but the formal process, partly hidden
behind the frenetic stream of fast gestures, is considerably slower.
I tried to imagine what happens to the famous moth that circles around a lamp in Skryabin’s Vers
la flamme, after the wings have finally touched the flame. A series of gestures is introduced in the
beginning. Each gesture undergoes an individual development, culminating in spasms before dying
away. YTA III is a study of the death of an organism; the music is violent and ugly.' - Esa-Pekka Salonen