for any two bowed string instruments (2016/18)

open duration (at least 30′)

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ærc is the Old English word for ark, derived from the Latin arca, a chest. Here it denotes an enclosed space, perhaps of refuge or safety, certainly of intimacy.

ærc duos is derived from my ensemble piece ærc (2016), for a large number of orchestral string instruments. In that work, the players are paired, as in the ark of Noah, entering the figurative space of the work two-by-two and creating a dense polyphonic texture (a giant viol consort) from breath-like bow-strokes, each pair in rhythmic unison, before exiting in sequence.

In ærc duos only one pair of instruments is present. The material is almost identical to that of ærc, but I have added a ninth piece (IX) to the original eight.