These short pieces take their titles from some of the Cut-Outs of Matisse. Each piece is an exploration of melodic lines, and their ability to create harmonic 'images'.
Two Dancers is a fast and virtuosic piece that mirrors the dynamic figures in the Matisse Cut-Out, and its joyful arabesques and angular leaps are suggestive of the dancers' gestures.
Icarus is a slow movement in which the music gradually becomes more agitated and rises to a climax before falling away again.
The last piece, The Parakeet and the Mermaid, is a bright and colourful interweaving of motivic patterns that brings the set to a sparkling conclusion.