Paul Patterson has had a close friendship with Krzysztof Penderecki for many years and ppp (Penderecki’s Party Piece) was written as a surprise birthday piece for Penderecki’s 80th birthday and was premiered at the Warsaw Philharmonic Hall in November 2013 by Aleksandra Kuls violin and Aleksandra Swigut piano.
As the title suggests it is a fun virtuoso piece for violin and piano with lots of energy and humour. It is continuous and has four sections; the opening introduction starts with rather bold statements exchanged between the two players and as the conversations develop subtitle references to the notes of “happy birthday to you” are introduced leading to a compelling climax. A solo violin link leads to a very rhythmic section with flowing melodies, after much interplay it moves into a waltz with a difference, where the violin pizzicato becomes more prominent. After a number of exuberant passages the opening material is revisited and the piece builds to a vigorous, very bright and joyous finale!