Valse Noire


Valse Noire


for cello and piano (2014)

  • Premiere: 27 March 2015 / Church of St. Matthew and St. Timothy, New York, NY / Adrian Daurov, cello / Di Wu, piano

  • Instrumentation: vlc.pft

  • Duration: 4'

  • "For Di Wu and Adrian Daurov."

  • All orders are digital downloads. To order paper scores please visit our partner distributor, Theodore Front.

Pianist Di Wu

Cellist Adrian Daurov

Program note

Ever since my first visit to the Palm Court in 1982 I have longed to craft a pair of fairly short, virtuosic character-pieces replete with sentimental expression and admiring nods to the masters of the salon genre: composers like Gottschalk, and Boulanger, and performers like Serkin and Kreisler. The result is a diptych comprising Valse Blanche for violin and piano, and Valse Noire, for cello and piano.

Subtitled Assignation at the Palm Court, 28 June 1914, Valse Noire tells the following story: a young soldier and his bride on their honeymoon enjoy their first high tea together at the Palm Court of the Plaza Hotel in New York City. 

Holding hands, they listen to the court's cellist and pianist. News arrives that that Archduke Ferdinand and his wife have been assassinated in Sarajevo. Action.

This meaty morsel was was confected in 2014 especially for pianist Di Wu and cellist Adrian Daurov and is dedicated to them.

-- Daron Hagen, 2015

Artist's rendering of the assasination of Archduke Ferdinand and his wife.

Artist's rendering of the assasination of Archduke Ferdinand and his wife.

(Banner photo: (l. to r.) Adrian Daurov and Daron Hagen.)