for flute, clarinet, violin, cello and piano
The solo viola introduction of Béla Bartók’s Sixth String Quartet (1939) was used as the basis for this work, Arium. The “borrowed” material is never openly stated, it is abstracted and distilled into the overall fabric of the work. The word “arium” is a suffix occasionally added to English words which means in place of, or place for. The composition Arium, therefore, provides a new interpretation or place for the original source material. Arium is dedicated to the memory of this great Hungarian composer.
Arium is in one continuous movement is approximately 14 minutes in duration.
The work was commissioned by the contemporary performing ensemble THIRA, with funds provided by the Manitoba Arts Council, and was premiered by them in 1989. Edward Smaldone conducted the ensemble comprised of: Laurel Ridd, flute; Lori Freedman, clarinet; Giselle Dalbec, violin; Karin Erhardt, cello; Mary Jo Carrabré, piano.