Chamber variations

Dorothy Chang
Dorothy Chang
Composition Date: 2004
Revision Date: 2010
Duration: 00:14:00
Genre: Orchestra / Large Ensembles, Full Orchestra (20 or more)


Instrumentation Set Number 1:
  • 1 x Flute
  • 1 x Oboe
  • 1 x Clarinet
  • 1 x Bassoon
  • 1 x Horn
  • 1 x Percussion
  • 1 x Harp
  • 2 x Violin
  • 1 x Viola
  • 1 x Violoncello
  • 1 x Double bass
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Programme Note:
In 2003, I received a commission to write a piece that would be performed in the Assembly Chamber of the New York State Capitol Building, with the new work inspired by elements of this impressive historical hall. Each movement of Chamber Variations reflects a different aspect of the room. The first movement, 'Stone and Granite' takes it inspiration from the grandeur of the original structure. Completed in 1879, the magnificent hall featuring the widest Gothic-arch vaulted stone ceiling ever made, with numerous supporting ribs and four massive granite pillars. The music mirrors the architectural structure of the room, with pairs of instruments outlining independent lines rising at various rates, and an overall air of stateliness. The second movement,
'Spin Machine' is characterized by declamatory statements and surges of motion and intensity. The fast-paced energy of this movement is meant to convey the sense of 'fast-forwarding' through time with constant shifts from idea to idea and continually bustling activity. The third movement, 'In Stillness', is a reflection of the Assembly Chamber as it stands today, with its original floors covered in deep red carpeting and the grand arch ceiling covered by a more stable but lower wooden structure. The room is now more serene than grandiose, but still striking. In Stillness depicts the beauty of the afternoon sun streaming through the chamber's stained-glass windows, creating a warm glow throughout the silent hall.

Commissioned by: Albany Symphony Orchestra

Premiere Information:
13/03/04, New York State Capitol Building, Albany, NY; Albany Symphony Orchestra, David Alan Miller, conductor


  • Call Number:
  • MI 1100 C456ch
  • Genre:
  • Orchestra / Large Ensembles, Full Orchestra (20 or more)
  • Date of Acquisition:
  • March 12, 2007
  • Type:
  • Print-music, Published by CMC
  • Physical Description:
  • 1 score (67 p.) ; 28 cm.
    67 Pages
    Height: 32 cm
    Width: 24 cm
    Parts page count: 99
    12 parts ((99) p.) ;
    Height: 28 cm
  • Additional Information:
  • Instrumentation: flute/piccolo, oboe, clarinet, bassoon, horn, percussion, harp, 2 violins, viola, cello, bass
    1. stone and granite
    2. spin machine
    3. in stillness
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Chamber Variations: Score
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Chamber variations by Dorothy Chang (Score)
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