Dance for Orchestra
Composer Facsimile Edition & MMC CD, 13 minutes
Does music dance? Larson, a trained dancer and teacher, felt that it can. She spoke of how “the music of Dance for Orchestra originated in her own kinetic and emotional experience of dance... Rushing forth versus holding back, the direct stance versus the oblique, the feel of pulling gravity versus weightlessness, the step of expected length versus a sudden mincing or a greater reaching....”.
Larson's piece is in classical sonata form and is in one movement. The introduction presents the basic musical material explored in the rest of the movement including whole-tone scales and tritones in particular.
Dance for Orchestra (1977) has received various performances, including one in 1978 by the National Gallery Orchestra in Washington, D.C. conducted by Richard Bales that was also broadcast nationwide on the America in Concert series. The recording in 1994 by the Prague Radio Symphony, Vladimir Valek, conductor, was made under the direction of the composer.