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Concerto for Piano (1968) was revised by the composer and edited by the composer and Mark Thome for publication in 2024 as Citiscape Lights.
The piano concerto was composed in an idiom which treats jazz rhythms in a symphonic format. In the first movement, a perpetual motion pulsates in the piano part. A second theme in a more lyrical vein is first introduced by the winds and later elaborated in the piano part. The two themes are recapitulated until the piano takes the field with an extended cadenza in which the motor action of the first theme prevails. The orchestra reenters with a triumphant restatement of the lyrical theme.
Several instruments in the orchestra share the spotlight with the piano in the slow movement which is purely melodious and wistful. There follows without a pause a rhythmical introduction to the third movement in which jazz characteristics are even more dominant an in which cross rhythms abound. In the contrasting middle section, the jazz elements become more discreet but never disappear. A somewhat abbreviated recapitulation leads to a terse coda consisting of a few bars of hesitation and a few more of exuberance - a question mark and an exclamation point juxtaposed. The preparation of Citiscape was made possible in part by a grant from the University of Kansas General Research Fund.
based on 1968 Concerto for Piano and Orchestra;
The 2024 edition of Citiscape Lights Concerto for Piano and Orchestra by H. Leslie Adams was made with reference to several earlier documents, including scores from pianist Richard Reber, who gave the premiere in 1976, the composer's own expanded and revised versions from the 1980s, a set of engraved files done by a copyist in 2005 but never fully completed, versions from the ACA archives, and in consultations with the composer during 2020-21. The editor of the 2024 edition, Mark Thome, has an extensive composing/arranging background in jazz and popular music. He addressed ambiguities in the various versions and worked closely with the composer to resolve notational issues, phrasing marks, and balance, with instructions provided by the composer, with the goal of highlighting the sound of the piano more clearly in the textures.
It is ACA's great privilege to offer this new score to the world on behalf of the wonderful composer and pianist Dr. H. Leslie Adams.
Percussion 1: Snare Drum, Mark Tree, Shaker
Percussion 2: Suspended Cymbal, Tambourine, Triangle, Crash Cymbals, Tam-tam
Percussion 3: Xylophone, Bells, Wood Block, Vibraphone, Marimba