One Hundred Percent Chance of Rain (2016)

Violin, cello, and piano
Duration: ca. 6:00
Commissioned by the Northwest Piano Trio
Premiere on March 12, 2016

Inspired by a particularly rain-soaked autumn in Oregon, this piece starts off with a bang – maybe it’s thunder cracking, maybe it’s a few waterlogged branches hitting the ground – clearing the air for the sound of random, rhythmic droplets (don’t you always try to make a rhythm out of the dripping sounds?). Against this repetitive but somewhat unpredictable background, a lyrical melody begins in the violin, evoking quiet musings on the rainy scene, some warmth, and a touch of melancholy. The cello echoes these sentiments before a sudden squall rips dramatically through, a wink at those who would make much of the weather and another clearing of the air. Clouds roll gracefully by, urged on by little gusts of wind, and there are a few moments of calm before the drips and sprinkles continue in the quiet, percussive sounds of strings col legno and plucked piano strings. Finally the lyrical melody returns in all the instruments as the wind picks up again and rivulets of water stream downward, heading toward the source of the next round of rain.

Live performance by Nelly Kovalev, violin, Hamilton Cheifetz, cello, and Julia Hwakyu Lee, piano. November 10, 2016.