Illusions for solo cello by Donald Steven Duration 6′
Illusions is a dramatic work, full of contrasts and juxtapositions, written for solo cello in the tradition of the Bach Cello Suites. Formally the work is in sonata form and is based on a twelve-tone row which contains both atonal elements and a subset of a Japanese koto scale. This technical juxtaposition provides a dramatic framework to challenge, to reflect and to meditate. We hear powerful, astringent writing, episodic reflection and very tender moments as the performer grapples with the countervailing tensions of illusion and reality.