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Natural Fantasy


I completed NATURAL FANTASY in 1985 in response to a commission from the American organist David Shuler. The composition of the piece was strongly affected by my then-recent engagement with the work of Benoit Mandelbrot, and the profound connection of music to the world of fractals is the underlying theme.Technical details would be burdensome to explore, but it is easy enough to describe the work's basic principles: strands of the polyphony that generate the piece have a "statistical" character — not that any detail is other than fully chosen, but rather that the gestural shapes that describe the lines are the fundamental units of continuity, and their actual note-content is made to fit the needs of the shape. This turns my otherwise constant way of working on its head, for in all other works of mine, the note or pitch-class content has absolute priority over all other dimensions of a composition. In this sense, then, the NATURAL FANTASY is unique in my catalogue.