"Dekatriad" - Irish Chamber Orchestra
I worked on "Dekatriad" in the autumn of 1995 in two arts centres, the Tyrone Guthrie Centre at Annaghmakerrig (Ireland) and I Kourti in Vouniatades, Corfu (Greece). The piece is dedicated to Iannis Arzoglu of I Kourti, where I learned to appreciate sunlight.
"Dekatriad" is built from six scales - diatonic major, diatonic minor, chromatic, octotonic (alternatic tones and semitones), whote tone, pentatonic - and a recurrent "cadential" melodic formula. The presentation of this material is mainly, but not entirely, vertical and allwance is made for various different combinatorial possibilities of the ensemble: 13 soloists, seven desks, string quintet, juxtaposition of solo and tutti, and short cadenzas for soli (just before the closing section, in which Michael O Súilleabháin claimed to discern "bug-eyed monsters"). The final G major chord stands apart from what went before - not a summation as in "proper" tonal music, but a dismissal.