Performed by Christian Humcke at the Peabody Composition Department Recital on April 21, 2016.
Night Toccata was written for Barry Hannigan, my former piano teacher at Bucknell and a dear friend. I premiered the piece earlier in April at an alumni farewell recital honoring his 38 years as a teacher, after which he is retiring. The piece features three main ideas. At the beginning, the toccata rhythm slowly emerges out of rumbling textures in the lowest register. The second idea is the toccata, which begins low and is eventually juxtaposed with sharp pointed attacks in the upper register. The third idea is ethereal and distant and floats hauntingly over the sustained low clusters which precede these sections.