Pyrrichean dances
for viola, percussion and string orchestra

Christos Hatzis
Composition Date: 2001
Duration: 00:33:00
Genre: Orchestra / Large Ensembles, String Orchestra With Multiple Soloists


Instrumentation Set Number 1:
  • 1 x Other percussion
  • 1 x Viola
  • 1 x String orchestra
Programme Note:
I Broken Mirrors
II Postcards from the (un)Holy Land
III Love among the Ruins
IV Worlds in Collision

The title of this work is derived from the Greek pyrrichios, a form of war dance. Although the music is not always dance-like, the concept of aggression as a form of ‘dance’ permeates the entire work and is symbolically and physically present everywhere. The music is in four movements: the outer movements are very virtuosic and focus on both soloists; the second movement is for all intents and purposes a piece for solo viola and strings with the percussion receding into the background; in the third movement this emphasis is reversed and the spotlight turns to the percussionist (on musical saw and marimba). The two middle movements can be performed independently by each soloist as self-contained pieces.

Premiere Information:
Commissioned by Rivka Golani and Beverley Johnston (with funding support from the Canadian Broadcasting Corporation, the Ontario Arts Council and the Laidlaw Foundation). Premiered Rivka Golani (va), Beverley Johnston (perc), Manitoba Chamber Orchestra, Roy Goodman (cond), Westminster United Church, Winnipeg, Manitoba, 12 February.


  • Call Number:
  • MI 1700 H367pyr
  • Genre:
  • Orchestra / Large Ensembles, String Orchestra With Multiple Soloists
  • Date of Acquisition:
  • March 19, 2007
  • Type:
  • Print-music, published
  • Physical Description:
  • 1 score (145 p.); 30 cm.
    145 Pages
  • Language Information
  • Main language: English
  • Additional Information:
  • For viola, percussion and string orchestra.
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Pyrrichean dances for viola, percussion and string orchestra
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