My fascination with the timbral qualities and myriad colours of the woodwind family was the stimulus that led to the creation of these two short pieces for this combination. Composed a number of years ago, both have been revised in the light of experience gained over the passage of time.
Aside from the fanfare-like opening, each Miniature is cast in ternary form. The harmonic language could best be described as neo-tonal but with a chromatic twist (notably in the second). Melodic opportunities are shared consistently between the three instruments, often being extended by imitative interplay or antiphonal exchange (especially in the first). A recurring rhythmic motif in both pieces - a dotted quaver idea in the former and a triplet quaver figure in the latter - helps to bind the texture together.
The descriptive titles are intended to convey the underlying character of each: 'The Dancing Doll' should sound bright, breezy and playful, whereas 'The Doleful Doll' is much more introspective and reflective in mood. Finally, the technical and musical demands in the two Miniatures should be within the capabilities of players of intermediate to advanced standard.- Graham Nelson