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Nocturne in F Major

Composer: Pius Cheung

Instrument: Percussion Duo

Level: Advanced

Published: 2011

Price: €20.00

Item details

  • Description +
    • Duration: 8 min.

      Nocturne in F Major was written while I was living in New York.  In a city that never sleeps, I find myself constantly surrounded by sound, whether it is subway noises or the polyphony of loud music on the streets.  While some people thrive on the intense and busy tempo of life in New York, it did not quite fit my personality.  Therefore, this nocturne (night music) is in a way a reflection of my need to find inner peace.

  • Instrumentation +
    • Marimba and Vibraphone

  • About the composer +
    • The young Chinese-Canadian marimbist PIUS CHEUNG has already been recognized as a master soloist on his unusual instrument. His brilliantly played CD of Bach’s Goldberg Variations elicited a feature story in The New York Times which praised not only his technical feat of performing the intricacies of this keyboard work on the marimba, but also his “deeply expressive interpretation, notable for its clear voicing, eloquent phrasing and wide range of color and dynamics.” The album has been heard in the U. S. on National Public Radio and in Canada on CBC Radio. His second CD, Symphonic Poem, comprised entirely of his own compositions, was released at PASIC in November 2009.

      Since his U.S. concerto debut with the Philadelphia Orchestra in 2003, Mr. Cheung has toured extensively as a concerto and recital soloist around the world. Highlights of his recent performances include concerts at the Usedomer Music Festival in Germany, Hong Kong Arts Festival, 8th International Marimba Festival in Mexico, Percussive Arts Society International Convention 2009, Terrace Theater at Kennedy Center and Zankel Recital Hall at Carnegie Hall.

      In addition to concert performances, Mr. Cheung has presented masterclasses in some of the world's finest music institutions including the Conservatorium van Amsterdam, Conservatoire de Paris, Conservatoire National Supérieur de Lyon, Curtis Institute of Music, Boston Conservatory, Universities of Michigan, South Florida, Central Florida, Illinois and Boston.

      As a composer, Mr. Cheung was hailed by Washington Times as “... a composer in his own right – one who writes the kind of music people will want to hear.” He won 1st Prize at the Classical Marimba League’s 2007 Composition Competition for his Three Etudes. Among his numerous works for the marimba are a Marimba Concerto with String Orchestra and Timpani, Symphonic Poem, and collections of sonatas, ballades, musical moments and etudes. His compositions have been recorded by renowned marimbists and chosen as repertoire for numerous national and international competitions.

      Mr. Cheung moved to Vancouver with his family at the age of 12. He received his Bachelor of Music from the Curtis Institute of Music in Philadelphia, his Artist Diploma from The Boston Conservatory, and his Doctorate from the University of Michigan.

  • Reviews +
    • Review (Percussive Notes, July (60) 2012)

      Laden with lush chords and harmonic depth, this duo for vibraphone and 5.0-octave marimba is a wonderful adaptation of the composer’s marimba solo by the same name. Inspired by a need to find “inner peace” amidst a season of residence in busy New York, this duet breathes and moves with tenderness and tranquility.


      Considering the source material from which it came, it is no surprise that the marimba part is the more demanding of the two in terms of four-mallet difficulty, harmonic contribution, and dexterity. However, in spite of a rather formulaic transcription where the vibraphonist shoulders much of the melodic material while accompanied by (or played in unison with) the marimbist, the unique character and allure of the original solo is effectively captured and presented in a way that will please performers and audience members alike. Appropriate for university undergraduate and graduate performances, this nine-minute duet is a welcome addition to keyboard repertoire from an accomplished and talented composer and performer.

      —Joshua D. Smith

  • Credits +
    • Front Cover graphics and layout: Ronni Kot Wenzell
      Engraving: Pius Cheung/Johan Svitzer
      Printed in Copenhagen, Denmark
      Copyright © Edition Svitzer

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