Starwinky

Starwinky is written after the last piece of Schumann's Märchenbilder for viola and piano. The piece starts and ends with a very simple and delightful melody that largely inhabits in that wonderful, pithy, low register of the viola. But it is the middle section that so inspired my inner thief - the piano takes the reins and plays a solo piece. The viola, having nothing better to do, dances up and down these strange little arpeggios built mainly (if the players wishes) of open strings. The sound is unusual in the most subtle way. This is how Starwinky opens.

The first time I performed this piece, it still didn't have a title, so I (sheepishly) asked the audience to tell me if they happened to think of one. My father was sat next to an elderly gentleman who pulled out a pen and paper to jot down his thoughts. The gentleman never approached me, but my father amusedly reported reading on his page "starwinky". Only when I got home and wrote it down myself did I realise he must have written Strawinsky. Nevertheless, Starwinky is a cute and silly new word, and it stuck.

Starwinky. Played by Reg Quiring (viola) and Rosemary O'Connor (piano).