Commissioned by the National Endowment for the Arts for the consortium of the Atlanta Virtuosi, Rowe Quartet and New England Piano Quartette, the Variations
have been composed in sketches during the summer of 1983, and completed in the spring of 1984 in Ithaca, New York.
The technique of variation in the classical sense, i.e. mostly changing the given theme, is used only sparsely; the work explores rather the alterations of sound intervals, chords and forms in permutations, mirroring, and techniques. Combinations of bell-like sounds are applied throughout the different sections and always slightly modified.Variations
are written in a virtuosic manner, exploring the possibilities of techniques and sounds of given instruments.
Associated Music Publishing