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Alongside the six Quartettini, continuing from them, came these adventures in small-scale composition—relatively rare chez moi earlier, and sometimes seeming to be "against nature" (fundamentally expansive). The two commissions of summer 2007 were both for small forces—vocal sextet, wind quintet—and for ten minutes' duration. I chafed and groaned and—with initial difficulty and final pleasure—obeyed. After the one-and-a-half hours of the uncut Fourth Concerto, size needed its opposite. Since it, some fifteen pieces, none longer than ten minutes, most shorter, have helped actually extend my range while apparently contracting it.

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