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The Arching Path: III.

from The Arching Path by Christopher Cerrone

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about

The Arching Path stems from the composer’s visit to the Ponte sul Basento (Bridge over the Basento River) in the southern Italian city of Potenza. Designed in 1967 by the architect Sergio Musmeci, the bridge is notable for its substructure: a single span of concrete, forming four connected arches with antler-like offshoots that serves as a pedestrian walkway. For nearly the entire work, the pianist manipulates the soft and damper pedals, enveloping the instrument in resonance, such that we hear much of The Arching Path through the haze of what has come before.

From the last wisps of “Sul Basento” begins the last movement, initiating our departure from the scene and the journey home. In place of a title, Cerrone gives an epigram (“—distance avails not, and place avails not”) from Walt Whitman’s “Crossing Brooklyn Ferry,” a sort of commuter’s rhapsody attesting to the universality of human experience. The composer derives this valediction from the preceding movements: over a ruminating bass that recalls the second, strands of crescendi, recalling the first, conclude in a high, loud quiver, as though the pianist has struck a reflex. The bass line seems about to settle, then evaporates entirely; left to themselves, the crescendi vault out of the instrument with no intention of landing.

credits

from The Arching Path, released May 21, 2021
Timo Andres, piano

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Christopher Cerrone Brooklyn, New York

Christopher Cerrone (b. 1984) has been commissioned by Los Angeles Philharmonic, Detroit Symphony, and the Cincinnati Symphony, among others and his opera Invisible Cities was a finalist for the 2014 Pulitzer Prize. He was nominated for a 2020 Grammy Award. He lives and works in Brooklyn, NY. ... more

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