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Concerto for Piano and Chamber Orchestra, "Amor Fati"

Dedicated to Eldred Marshall


Duration: 15 minutes

Pno, fl, ob, cl, bsn, hn, tpt, tbn, tuba, timp, (1) perc, vln, vla, vc, cb

Over the process of composing this piece, it slowly became a self-portrait, a reflection of sorts that represented this period of my life, a period of uncertainty, anxiety, and most of all, the unknown. Amor Fati translates to “love of one’s fate.” Though this piece was nearly complete before I stumbled upon this title, somehow this phrase resonated with me in a way that countered any looming negative thoughts I had, as well as described how I aspire to view my own fate.

   The piece opens with a very intense and agitated theme, which over the course of the music is transformed. The piano’s role is one of conflict towards the orchestra. The dialogue between the ensemble and soloist, though at times may sound harmonious, is filled with dissension. The two are constantly combating each other’s themes by interrupting and rudely dominating the music in the midst of the other’s sentence. However, during the final climax, the two finally merge into a single entity, representing hope and… well, a love for one’s fate. Whether the listener truly makes the connections between how I view the concerto’s themes matters not. I only ask that you fully allow the piece to take you, and let your imagination dictate what this piece means to you.

“My formula for greatness in a human being is amor fati: that one wants nothing to be different, not forward, not backward, not in all eternity. Not merely bear what is necessary, still less conceal it… but love it."

-Friedrich Nietzsche