Hilary Tann (1947-2023)

On Ear and Ear

Year: 2011

Duration (in minutes): 9

Difficulty: High (professional)

Category: small chamber ensembles - 2 to 4 players, solo instrument with piano, solo string with piano

Instruments: piano, viola

Publisher: Rowanberry Music

Score PDF: on_ear_and_ear-pgs1-3-secure-5.pdf

Description: On Ear and Ear … takes its cue from the opening few measures of Milton Babbitt’s 1950 Composition for Viola and Piano. Heard in slow motion, there is something so tender about the timbral and registral choices in the first four measures and these become reference points for this hommage. The title is from Gerard Manley Hopkins’ sonnet, “The Sea and the Skylark”. The two “ears” become those of the composer and her mentor at Princeton (Milton Babbitt); the two instruments (piano and viola); and the sea (“low lull-off or all roar”) and lark (“his rash-fresh rewinded new-skeinèd score”). On Ear and Ear … was composed in June/July 2011 for the Perspectives of New Music / Open Space memorial tribute to Milton Babbitt. (Audio features Matthew Jones, vla; Annabel Thwaite, pno.)

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