Chester Music is the publisher of this work in all territories except Poland, Albania, Bulgaria, China, countries of the former Czechoslovakia, Cuba, North Korea, Vietnam, Romania, Hungary and the whole territory of the former USSR, where the copyright is held by Polskie Wydawnictwo Muzyczne (PWM).
This brilliant piece by Lutoslawski was specially commissioned by and dedicated to Dr. Walter Strebi to celebrate the fiftieth birthday of his daughter Ursula, who is married to Philip Jones. Dr Strebi was a Swiss lawyer and staunch patron of music; for many years he was president of the Lucerne Festival. Unfortunately, he did not live to hear the striking result of his commission, which had its world premiere on 11 March 1982, played by the Philip Jones Brass Ensemble. The audience demanded that it be encored.
Despite its brevity, this is a fully characteristic Lutoslawski piece in its detailed structure and sensitivity to timbre and nuance. The composer has clearly had in mind the virtuosity of this group of players and has pulled no technical punches. There are three short sections (but no break), the third being a further development of the first; the second is slightly slower and strongly contrasting in texture.