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Impermanent Things

A meditation on the transient nature of beauty

This lyrical work gradually unfolds from a single note into an expressive rhapsody.  Its rich chords and elegant formal structure create a poignant and poetic elegy, a paean to all things treasured and fleeting.

Elizabeth talks about Impermanent Things on Minnesota Public Radio's "Regional Spotlight"


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Look Listen Instrumentation/Voicing Duration Level Item Delivery Method Price Quantity Viola, piano - Full Score
7' MA SEA-085-00 Sheet Music
Viola, piano - Full Score
7' A SEA-085-00D Licensed PDF
Viola, piano - Viola Part
7' MA SEA-085-01 Sheet Music
Viola, piano - Viola Part
(Click on PDF icon to download part)
7' MA SEA-085-01D Free PDF
Cello, piano - Full Score
7' MA SEA-085-02 Sheet Music
Cello, piano - Full Score
7' MA SEA-085-02D Licensed PDF
Cello, piano - Cello Part
7' MA SEA-085-03 Sheet Music
Composer's Note: 

For centuries people have sought to appreciate the transience of life. It is expressed in Japan’s revered cherry blossom season and in Zen Buddhism’s meditation on the breath. While an appreciation of nature and breath are both part of my own spiritual practice, I had something specific in mind when I wrote Impermanent Things: my son Oliver, both infinitely resilient and hopelessly fragile (as are we all), and changing every day into the man he would become.

Unfolding from a single note, this piece grows more and more expressive as it comes into its own. In fact, I was astonished at how unrepentantly rhapsodic the piece became – like shrubs that bloom so lavishly in summer that one can’t see the flowers for the bees. This kind of indulgence is not necessarily what my music is known for, and yet here it is: One more way for art to help us make sense of this treasured and fleeting thing called life.




Viola and Piano:
Evan Vicic & Elizabeth Alexander (Saint Paul, MN)

Cello and Piano:
PREMIERE: Lynn Angebranndt & Susan Srvcek (Redlands, CA)





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