Poul Ruders SONATAS 2011 for Large Wind Ensemble,Percussion, Harp and Piano.Preface / Programme NoteNormally, when being confronted with the term ´sonata´, we tend tothink of a substantial composition for piano solo in three movements,predominantly by Mozart or Beethoven. The word, however, derivesfrom the Italian ´sonare´ meaning ´to play´. In the 16th. Century acomposition entitled ´sonata´ merely indicated a piece of music forinstruments, as opposed to the ´cantata´ - a piece involving voices.The Italian cantare simply means ´to sing´.The present suite SONATAS is a composition subtitled ´six piecesof music for large wind ensemble, percussion, piano and harp´. Itopens with a REVEILLE, a short ´wake-up call´, a fanfare openingthe gate into what follows. The second movement is calledPASTORALE and certainly is that, a peaceful unfolding of gentlechords and sounds of a bucolic nature. Nothing dramatic happens,whereas in the third movement SCHERZO the wood winds chaseeach other in a wild relay run.Then, all of a sudden, the mood changes, and we are plunged rightinto the middle of the darkest night. In the NOCTURNE, unnervinglysubtitled sinistro, the low rumbling chords in the trombones andprickly outburst in oboes and horns form the sinister back drop tothis wordless Grand Guignol. Which merges seamlessly intoPANORAMA, an unfolding festive, almost pageant like ´sound-scape´of dancing rhytms and jubilant scales. Slowly, however, the tempodrops and the former boisterous body of sound is being slowly andmercilessly ´skeletonized´ - and at the end there is nothing left.RETRAITE - "the last post". The day is over, the sun sets.