Asylum
for violin, violoncello, and piano

Jocelyn Morlock
Composition Date: 2010
Duration: 00:10:00
Genre: Strings (bowed), + Keyboard, Trio (Violin / Cello / Keyboard)

Instrumentation:

Instrumentation Set Number 1:
  • 1 x Piano
  • 1 x Violin
  • 1 x Violoncello
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Programme Note:
Asylum, for violin, violoncello, and piano
Co-commissioned by the CBC and the Tuckamore Chamber Music Festival, for the tenth anniversary of the Festival, and the 200th anniversary of Robert Schumann’s birth. Premiered August 6, 2010 at the Tuckamore Chamber Music Festival by Nancy Dahn, violin; Vernon Regehr, violoncello, and Timothy Steeves, piano.
General Notes on Asylum and Schumann:
The first four piano notes of Asylum are a very slow-motion quote from Schumann’s Mondnacht (the fifth song in his Liederkreis, Op. 39.) The mood of the opening section (mm. 1 - 33) is reminiscent of the ethereal mood of Mondnacht, though there is a general descent into something more disturbed. The next two sections of the piece (mm. 34 - 56, mm. 57 - 96) both start similarly; the first of these again dissolves into a mood of disquiet but the second time there is a more expansive and calmer transition. (The harmonic underpinning of this second transition is another Mondnacht quote; it is based on the harmonies of the last line of the song als flo¨ge sie nach Haus where there is a sort of ambiguous IV-I cadence.)
The end of the piece has a relatively direct quote of the first vocal line of the song at m. 104 in the violin. M. 116 to the end combines fragments of the melodic line of the words als flo¨ge and that of the first line of text (Es war, als ha¨tt' der Himmel) so as to seem like a fleeting recollection of the past.
Asylum is inspired by Schumann in several ways - I am very interested in the emotional landscapes of his music, and his dual characters Florestan and Eusebius. This piece tends toward the introverted but has various outbursts, before crawling back into its shell. (A good example of this "outburst" would be mm. 30-33.) The other source of inspiration is the combination of ecstasy and horror experienced by Schumann himself, and that whole range of emotions, often veering from one to another.
The name Asylum refers to both the asylum that Schumann found himself in at the end of his life (I imagine him having moments of calm where he recollects his life and hears his music), and perhaps more significantly to the idea of an asylum as a place of refuge, which I imagine and hope that music could be for Schumann, and which it certainly is for me.

Premiere Information:
06/08/2010, DF Cook Recital Hall, St. John's, NL; Tuckamore Chamber Music Festival; Nancy Dahn, violin; Vernon Regehr, violoncello; Timothy Steeves, piano.

CATALOGUE INFO:

  • Call Number:
  • MI 3233 M865asy
  • Genre:
  • Strings (bowed), + Keyboard, Trio (Violin / Cello / Keyboard)
  • Date of Acquisition:
  • May 26, 2011
  • Type:
  • Print-music, Published by CMC
  • Physical Description:
  • 1 score (18 p.) ;
    18 Pages
    Height: 28 cm
    Width: 22 cm
    Parts page count: 12
    2 parts ([12] p.) ;
    Height: 28 cm
    Width: 22 cm
  • Additional Information:
  • violin
    violoncello
    piano
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Asylum for Violin, Violoncello, and Piano: Score
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Asylum for violin, violoncello, and piano by Jocelyn Morlock (Score)
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Asylum for violin, violoncello, and piano
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