violin and piano
(2012) 15′




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I. Scorching

II. Scalding

III. Sweltering

IV. Shimmering

Ignace Jang, violin; Jonathan Korth, piano

Overheated is a series of 4 movements played without pause, each movement portraying a different aspect of heat. The inspiration for this piece came from my move to Seoul in August 2012. Upon stepping out of the airport I experienced a uniquely-oppressive kind of weather, a sweat-inducing heat that cannot be adequately described in words. As I wrote this work, I was confronted daily by soaring temperatures and incredible humidity that seeped into the fabric of the music.

The first movement, “Scorching,” features only the violin playing frenetic quick notes that boil like water and rise like the mercury of a thermometer. “Scalding,” the second movement, begins with the entrance of the piano, and continues with syncopated rhythms and sometimes-frenzied driving passages. This leads directly into the third movement, “Sweltering,” in which the melodies drip down and melt under the heat. The final movement, “Shimmering,” begins with the violin building momentum with harsh tones. Once the piano enters, the music leads to an intense sustained brightness, meant to evoke the image of white-hot flames burning.

Overheated was commissioned by the Hawaii Music Teachers Association, and is dedicated to Ignace Jang and Jonathan Korth.

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