Life Cycles
for solo violin or clarinet (1998)
duration: 3’
GRT • 048 / 049

CD available
Marianne Rothschild, violin
Reed Music


score available from
Australian Music Centre

note: this solo is also part of a larger collection –
Occasional Pieces

program note
This small violin solo was written at 24 hours notice for the funeral of a friend. A first draft was discarded, not for musical reasons but because I couldn't imagine it for the occasion. But what can sound right for such an occasion? So I didn't write about death, I wrote about life and its continuity, before and after ourselves. Of our connection to a constant stream of life outside of our own contribution towards it. Musically speaking, this then may be heard as a kind of theme and variations, using repetitions within repetitions and looping intervallic patterns.

“Life Cycles gives Griffiths a moment to shape soaring phrases”
Kate Rockstrom, Readings Magazine, September 2022

“Griffiths’ playing of the unaccompanied Life Cycles with its meandering approach to following a compositional thought process is a delight.”
Alan Holley, Classikon, September 2022

“A short work for solo clarinet, Life Cycles, depicts the continuity of life. The solo is written in theme and variation form and features ornamented statements that grow in complexity. Griffiths executes the technical demands with ease. The clarity he achieves in the whispered tremolos towards the end is impressive.”
Justin Stanley, International Clarinet Association – The Clarinet, June 2023