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Prince Street Chaconne
for solo guitar

Work no. 55
2015

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    Around late 2014 or early 2015 a disused house on Seattle's SW Prince Street was put up for sale on Zillow. I used to be quite fond of using Zillow to look at homes I couldn't afford, and this particular home immediately felt like a place I wished I could make my own. I obsessed over the link for a long time, until I couldn't bear it anymore. Sometime afterwards someone purchased the house. A friend in the US visited the site in 2018 and found the house renovated, the fence repaired, the new owners seemingly taking good care of their property.

    This chaconne, unlike the Villa Mors Chaconne composed immediately before it, was completed relatively quickly. The lengths of the sections were dictated by the house's Zillow ID. I decided against converting a single zero into a meaningful musical idea of a zero, so it was simply skipped. No fixed bass patterns – instead, a necklace of notes repeats through each variation. If it were a strictly contrapuntal piece, it would have been in the tenor voice, or perhaps in the alto.

    Just after completing the piece I was pleasantly surprised when I found out SW Prince Street turns up in three different locations on the map, broken up by rather large areas of completely different streets. The house in question doesn't seem to be visible from any satellite or aerial pictures, being completely obscured by trees. Somehow these things have found their way into the structure of the music, even though I have been quite unaware of them.


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