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David Knotts Kitharodia (1998)

For piano quartet

12 minutes

My starting point for Kitharōdia was Homer’s description of the legendary Thamyris, an exceptionally fine musician, who sang whilst accompanying himself on a five-stringed harp called a kithara. In this piece, the piano evokes the harp’s gentle strumming as the three string instruments play song-like melodies which become increasingly elaborate and impassioned. The end of Kitharōdia features a virtuoso duet for violin and viola. Michael Tippett died while I was working on the piece and I imagined him dancing off into the distance accompanied by this lively and bubbling music. This piece is dedicated to his memory. 

© David Knotts


Kitharōdia was commissioned by the Schubert Ensemble with funds provided by the Schubert Ensemble Trust. It was first performed by the Schubert Ensemble on 18th March 1998 at the Purcell Room, South Bank Centre, London

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