MUSIC

''Encounters I'' for Oud and Piano (Video)
2007, 11'20"
Encounters I is my first piece written for the Oud and particulary for the virtuosoOud player mr. Taiseer Elias. In this piece I’ve combined in a kind of confronting dialogue two instruments which represent typically their respective musical tradition: the noble Oud standing for the Middle – Eastern heritage and the Piano standing for the Western heritage. I’ve tried to emphasize in each instrument its typical attributes; The plucking and short notes of the Oud against the long sustain notes of the Piano using the pedal, and the linear quality of the Oud line against the chordal more densed texture of the Piano. The piece develops in a kind of free raphsodic way leaving ample of space for improvisation.
Duration:
11'20""
Composing Year:
1992
Preformance Year:
2007
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''Like Clay in the Potter's Hand'' for Viola and Piano
1997, 7'10"
Commissioned by the “Council for Culture and Art".
This is another version of my piece written for Vlc & Piano, which bears the same title and which was developed later to become my Cello Concerto. 
The title is drawn from the wonderful poetic verse, which is part of the prayer for the Day of Atonement (Yom Kippur):
 
 
”Like the clay in the hand of the potter:
 
Who thickens or thins it at his will, 
 
So are we in Thy hand, gracious God, 
 
Forgive our sin, Thy covenant fulfil."
 
 
The special reciprocal relations which develop between the potter and the clay (the creator and the material) give a kind of conceptual frame to my work, in which the soloist assumes the role of the "potter" and the piano is the "clay". 
 
In the course of the short piece (8`) the listener witnesses the progression of relations between the creator and his spiritual creation, from the first moment of it's coming into being; through the struggle to give the formless matter the desired clear and distinct shape. From the state of contention the relations change into one of complete identification of the creator with his material, and this symbiosis frees the constraints of the material. It finds independence within the space and becomes its own master. What remains is an echo - the material gradually disappears, it evaporates leaving the creator drained… until his next composition. 
 
In spite of all these, the piece shouldn't be seen as programme music having a plot or describing anything, but rather represents pure and abstract music, which can stand on its own merits and listen to without all my private poetic connotations.
 
The work is written in expressive and chromatic language but a tonal center can be discerned (the tone C). It is based on the sound which derives from an ascending row of tones at intervals which grow from a small second to a small six.
Duration:
7'10""
Composing Year:
1994
Preformance Year:
1997
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Concertino for Oud and Piano
Avner Biron 2001, 16'30"
Comissioned by the "Lille Festival" for the Israel Camerata-Jerusalem Orchestra. 
The concertino for oud, piano and string orchestra starts with an introduction in the spirit of a taqsim – the typical improvised opening so often found in Arabic music. From this opening dialogue between the oud and piano emerges the first section, in which the orchestra makes its entrance. All its melodic gestures have an ornamental character full of melismatic lines so dear to Middle Eastern music. The mosaic-like structure of this first section gains momentum and leads the second section, written in a more cantabile style somewhat similar to the Samai, an Arabic musical form with a specific 10/8 meter.
The third section, played uninterruptedly following the second one, consist of an improvised piano and then oud cadenzas, both accompanied by the orchestra, as well as an impromptu dialogue between the two instruments. The piece ends with short brilliant passages, played in unison, in homage to Arabic music.
Duration:
16'30""
Composing Year:
1994
Preformance Year:
2001
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''Song of Land'' for Viola and Piano
, 3'33"
Taken from the cycle "Song of Land" for Mezzo-Sopran and Piano. 
Music by A. Argov.
Duration:
3'33""
Composing Year:
1988
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Trio (Lamento) for Oud, Cello and Piano
2005, 12'28"
Commissioned by Wisconsin University.
The Trio was commissioned by the Cellist Uri Vardi, and funded by the University of Wisconsin in Madison.   I wrote the piece in a belated response to the murder of the Israeli Prime Minister Itzhak Rabin.   It is a continuation of my earlier works which combine the oud with Western instruments in the context of Western music. The work develops in a free associative manner and contains, side by side, written parts open to improvisation by one of the instruments on the basis of ostinato (a repetitive pattern) by the other two. In spite of the work being constructed as a mosaic which underlines the oriental influences therein, it has also melodic, harmonic, rhythmic and orchestral motivic elements which are repeated, in transformation, throughout the piece and contribute to its unity. The character of the work is mainly gloomy and lamenting. Towards the end, however, a glimmer of hope and optimism can be felt.
Duration:
12'28""
Composing Year:
1996
Preformance Year:
2005
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