Three Fantasies for Violin and Piano was jointly commissioned by the Library of Congress and La Jolla SummerFest, which celebrates its 25th anniversary in summer 2006. It was premiered on May 19th, 2006 at the Library of Congress in Washington DC by violinist Cho-liang Lin and pianist Andre Schub, who subsequently gave the Westcoast premiere at La Jolla, CA on August 7th, 2006.
The three movements compiled here come from three seemingly very different inspirations, which led to title of the work. The first fantasy Dream Song is a short memory from what I heard in a dream, in which a violin and piano played a very simple tune.
The second fantasy Tibetan Air is inspired by a form of Tibetan folk song singing which vertically the meter and rhythm seem to appear randomly, but horizontally the singing is presented in a very straightforward long-breath motion. It might give the listener an unwieldy ‘wild’ feeling; yet it is utterly attractive.
This movement is followed without pause by the third fantasy Kazakhstan Love Song. This is based on a folk song I heard while traveling in the Chinese part of the Kazakhstan during the summer of 2000 when I was researching ethnic music along the ancient Silk Road Route. Although I did not understand the lyrics, I was immediately drawn by the sheer beauty and tinge of sadness in the melody.