Solo Music II, Ritual Lyrics and Dances for Solo Viola

for viola
By Robert Suderburg

Douglas Boyce, Suderburg’s student from 1988-1992 writes “Solo Music II” was one of first pieces of Bob’s that I heard. The performance by Donald McInnes was, naturally, masterful, and the recital as a whole had a substantial impact on many future choices that I would make in life; a sentimental attachment to the viola, an understanding of the dramatic impact of virtuosity, and, most of all, a since of the importance of engaged pluralism, always a major part of Bob’s compositional voice. While his ‘official’ publisher-approved biography states the “he abandoned twelve-tone procedures in the late 1960s, a move which allowed his music’s inherent romanticism and lyricism to blossom” I found it was Bob’s retentions of the modernist language that allowed the lyric elements of his music to speak so strongly. His interest in engagement with vernaculars was simply one part of his same interest in connecting with whatever musical traditions and practices presented themselves to him.

Ritual Cycle of Lyrics and Dances for unaccompanied viola (1988, rev. 1989, ed./rev. 1990) was commissioned by Donald McInnes supported by the National Endowment for the Arts at the Koldofsky Memorial Scholarship Recital at USC in Los Angeles on April 9, 1990.”

Other works by Robert Suderburg:
“Make music of everthing.”
--Georges Aperghis