Balancing on the Edge of Shadows
for violin and piano
Recorded by violinist Audrey Wright and pianist Yundu Wang.
This work for violin and piano was commissioned by Audrey Wright in early 2020, and was beautifully recorded by Audrey and Yundu for the Navona Records release of Audrey’s album THINGS IN PAIRS.
The premiere music video features the exquisite performances of Audrey and Yundu, with sound-responsive lighting created for this project by Geoff Robertson.
An “encore” release of the recording is included on my new album PASSAGES THROUGH TIME.
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Program note: The times in which I live always seep into the music, so I write from those emotions, rather than conceptually. As I began writing this piece and followed through the journey into the music, it took on a life of its own within the emotional logic of the music. It evolved to be quite beautiful, mysterious, with delicate subtlety. There is also an element of suspense, as if balancing on an edge between dark and light – aware of an ominous potential of darkness. – RW
Reviews of Balancing on the Edge of Shadows
"Balancing on the Edge of Shadows" for violin and piano evokes plaintive Judaic or Islamic chants (“quite beautiful, mysterious, with delicate subtlety”)". – The Whole Note, review by Michael Schulman (Toronto, Canada)
"Completed at the very beginning of the COVID-19 pandemic in 2020, Balancing on the Edge of Shadows foreshadows the collective fragility the world would soon experience as a result of this devastating and prolonged event, as well as widespread social and political upheaval. This music speaks in whispers. Ideas are presented as fragments, or are developed only to then leave the listener hanging in suspense. Towards the very end of the piece, the music seems to become more assured as both violin and piano reach their highest dynamic. There is a sense of courage and determination, but at the last moment the music fades back into the shadows." – Audrey Wright (THINGS IN PAIRS album program note)
"Coupling Biber’s Passacaglia for Solo Violin with Balancing on the Edge of Shadows by contemporary composer Rain Worthington is simply splendid. Biber and Worthington, separated by centuries of musical legacy, treat the violin as the most precious voice and there is a deep sonority running throughout, a shared melancholy that underlies the subtle tension underneath the beautiful melodies." – The Whole Note, review by Ivana Popovic (Toronto, Canada)