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Aaron Jay Kernis

Publisher: G. Schirmer

Air (for Violin and Orchestra) (1996)
Associated Music Publishers Inc
Soloists and Orchestra
Sub Category
Soloists and Chamber Orchestra
Year Composed
11 Minutes
Solo Instrument(s)
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Programme Note
Aaron Jay Kernis Air (for Violin and Orchestra) (1996)

Joshua Bell, violin
Minnesota Orchestra, David Zinman, conductor
Composer note:
Air is a love letter to the violin. Songlike and lyrical, it opens up a full range of the instrument's expressive and poignant possibilities. Composed with two main themes and open in harmony, the first poses melodic questions and their response, while the second is very still, rising ever-upward into the highest range of the violin. Following a middle section of dramatic intensity it cycles back to the themes in reverse, developing each along the way, and ending quietly after a final plaintive ascent. Air is dedicated to pianist Evelyne Luest, the composer's wife, and was composed in 1995 for violinist Joshua Bell. Since it's premiere it has been arranged in many versions with solo instrument and orchestra, chamber ensemble or piano.


  • Ensemble
    Minnesota Orchestra
    Joshua Bell, violin
    David Zinman
  • Ensemble
    St. Paul Chamber Orchestra
    Cho-Liang Lin, violin; Sharon Isbin, guitar
    Hugh Wolff
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