The impetus for the composition of Fantasy came from cellist Daniel Gaisford, who offered to judge and perform new solo cello works by young composers.  Given Mr. Gaisford’s mastery of the most difficult technique and repertoire and the outstanding quality of his instrument, I recognized an opportunity to research and explore the unique properties of the cello and write a piece demanding both virtuosity and delicate precision.

The result was a work that combines many of the more idiomatic styles of cello writing with more difficult or extended techniques, namely the use of natural as well as false harmonics.  That the harmony is based on the most readily available pitches in the overtone series of each string underscores the importance of this technique to the work.

Instrumentation: solo cello

Duration: 6’30”

Year composed: 2006

Alicia Ward, cello