for Violin and piano (or harpsichord)
or Solo piano
Duration: 5 mins
Solo piano version premiered by Maria McHale, Goethe Institute, Dublin, Ireland, 2005.
Tar Eis an Cran (meaning ‘After The Cran’) is a companion piece to my String Quartet No.2 ‘The Cranning’.
It begins as ‘The Cranning’ ends, with slow music based on the drones and regulators of Uilleann Pipes.
Following this opening comes an extended Reel for the fiddle with spare keyboard accompaniment.
As the Reel gets gradually more intense the accompaniment thickens.
Suddenly the music changes into 9/8, the rhythm of a Slip Jig and so a vigorously rhythmic section follows in this rhythm.
Then there is another sudden change to an aggressive Donegal-style Reel, this is a very repetitive Reel in Bminor which has some jazzy keyboard accompaniment. Gradually this material develops into a Baroque like sequence of chords. This change is complete when the swing almost goes and the music gets more Baroque like. The piece comes to a loud end following a sequence of fiddle rolls over rising and repetitive keyboard chords.
Incidentally, a ‘Cran’ is a sort of gurgling Uilleann Pipe ornamentation.