2222 4331 timp perc hp str
Commissioned by conductor Barry Silverman,
and premiered by South Coast Symphony on
February 4, 2005
Modigliani‘s arm is a quirky piece of orchestral tapestry.
It has some odd things, for example the Copelandesque horse hooves clip-clopping through the Appalachians about six minutes in.
Then there is that dreamy sequence about a minute in, which actually is pulled from an earlier fragment entitled "Flowers and Stones".
(Ron Levy likes to cannibalize his own music, and in doing so he IS in fine company along with George Frederick Handel, Wolfgang Amadeus Mozart et al.)
There are more adventures to describe — but I won't. Let Paul Bodine of the Orange County Register take it from here:
It's hard to dislike a piece whose composer modestly admits, "I honestly wasn't sure if the beautiful harmonies, ravishing melodies or exciting rhythms would be enough to hold the listener’s attention."
Built around the repetition by woodwinds and brass of a simple cartoonish motif, the “Arm” proceeds like a drunken sailor (painter?) stumbling clownishly down a fiendishly looping street, relieved only now and then by a sweetly lilting memory sounded on the strings. Call it weirdly memorable.
"Modigliani's Arm: YOU, sir, are weirdly memorable!"