Print Version: Score & Parts
Robert K. Mueller, Composer
Instrumentation: flute, oboe, clarinet, horn, bassoon
Duration: ca. 12 minutes
Veni Variationes, a set of variations scored for woodwind quintet, was commissioned and premiered by the Lyrique Quintette of the University of Arkansas in 2017. The tune which serves as the basis for the variations is “Veni Redemptor Gentium,” a fourth- century plainchant attributed to St. Ambrose, the bishop of Milan. Initially the variations employ more or less standard, classical techniques and the tune remains audible, traveling from instrument to instrument with interwoven accompaniments. Eventually the very idea of variation is altered to the point that the tune has been blown up into a thousand little pieces and must be reconstructed, at first in the incorrect key of F# minor, but finally the tune returns in G minor; as if nothing has happened, but with one little surprise at the end.