Martha's Waltz

for Orchestra

Jonathan Bailey Holland

Rental
Publisher: Theodore Presser Company
Print Status: Rental

Quick Overview

After reading Edward Albee's play, Who's Afraid of Virginia Woolf, I became interested in setting it to music in some form Martha's Waltz, my first orchestral composition, was the end result. The play involves two couples and takes place at the home of one of the couples late one evening. Martha, the central figure of the play, is an obsessive, domineering, alcoholic. Martha's Waltz is inspired mainly by the second act of the play which starts off with everyone dancing and ends with Martha seducing the man that is not her husband, while her husband plans the perfect revenge.

The piece begins with the violins stating the main theme. This theme is stated again with accompaniment. As other themes are introduced, this first theme continues to return. Following a short cadenza, the main theme is repeated a few times, slightly more distorted than the first time. The piece ends on the central interval of the piece, the tritone, which suggest that the fun and games have only just begun.

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Additional Information

Composition Date 1994
Duration 00:05:00
Orchestration 2 2 2 2 - 3 2 2 1; Perc. Pno. Str.
Premiere March 15, 1994. Curtis Orchestra, conducted by Takao Kanayama, Philadelphia, PA.