“OB-Vi-ous-ly a Quartet” derives its title from the acrostic formed by the instrumentation the work was composed for - Oboe, Bassoon, Violin, & Violoncello. The 10 minute work is in three uninterrupted movements. The first movement title, “The Wind in the Wires” is a reference to the woodwind and string combination. The movement introduces each of the four instruments in turn, after which they are equal participants in a lively exchange of motivic and thematic material in what is mostly an asymmetrical use of the 9/8 meter. The second movement “Heavy in My Arms” borrows its title from a statement made by Haitian musician and producer Wyclef Jean, regarding the unfolding tragedy in Haiti following the destructive earthquake:
“I carried bodies of my people in the cemetery...they should have been laughing,
they should have been singing, but instead, they were heavy in my arms.”The slow-tempo movement features the strings in more of an accompanimental role to the tandem of reeds which present the unfolding thematic material in a more dirge-like setting. The ebullient third and final movement “Jalopy” needs no explanation as the movement itself is a picturesque narrative of what the term evokes. Having said all of this, it might be surprising to note that the music for each of these movements was composed prior to the appellation of, or association with the above mentioned titles. However, it would be wrong to conclude that the titles as such are just an afterthought. Rather, they are for the composer at least one way in which musical thought and expression, often abstract and technical in its creation, connects with human experience.
"OB-Vi-ous-ly a Quartet" was commissioned by George Ryon with support from Alain and Anne De Gourdon (Lorée Oboes) and was written for the Acadian New Music Ensemble oboeist James Ryon, Bassoonist Gabriel Beavers, violinist and composer Piotr Szewczyk, and Cellist Regina Mushabac. The North American premiere was given at the 2010 International Double Reed Society conference - University of Oklahoma, in Norman, Oklahoma on June 26, 2010. The work was premiered at the Festival Internacional de Música de Campina Grande, Brazil on Monday, May 31, 2010.
I. The Wind in the Wires
II. "Heavy in My Arms"
Other Resanovic works featuring Oboe &/or Bassoon: