Instrumentation erhu quartet (two erhus, viola, violoncello)

Timing 12′

Composed 2023

World Premiere Coming in 2024. Vancouver Erhu Quartet

Programme Notes


Tesserae are small four-sided tiles, typically of ceramic, glass, or stone, used since early Roman times to make mosaics. Viewed as a single tessera, a quartet too has four sides, but looking closer, each member can be considered its own tessera, combining to create something bigger than the sum of its parts. In the four connected movements of this work for erhu quartet, we zoom out to see the big picture, then zoom in to see the details of the individual, showcasing the unique timbres of erhu, viola, and cello. Together, as the final movement reverses the first to take us back to the beginning, these four players create a mosaic of colour and energy.

Tesserae was composed for the Vancouver Erhu Quartet with support from the British Columbia Arts Council.

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