An aggregate of styles: Donald Martino's Fantasies and impromptus
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Donald Martino has maintained a consistent and individualistic approach to composition and has established himself as one of the most prominent American twelvetone composers of his time. In many of his works, he has successfully merged an interest in traditional formal structures with a contemporary harmonic language, balancing a concern for structure with a penchant for the dramatic and expressive. The integration of conventional forms and elements of romanticism with a progressive twelve-tone pitch organization is most evident in his Fantasies and Impromptus for solo piano. Within these pieces, he demonstrates his affinity for combining improvisation with structure, virtuosity with expression, and tradition with innovation. By fusing together classical formal structures with elements of romanticism, his unique twelve-tone language takes on a new meaning and becomes more comprehensible. These pieces are not limited to one particular style, but embody many approaches to become an aggregate, a synthesis of many influences and original ideas.