This work, as with several of Barry's pieces, exists in a number of versions. This version for two pianos is the original, written in 1979. 'O' for two pianos is one of two works with symbols as titles (the other is ' ' for ensemble). They were written as a response to seeing Rothko's paintings in Cologne. The composer wanted to write something as focused and to choose symbols which would clearly show the music's structure. Like refracted light, the circle with the diagonal line represents a melody deflected from its course.
Publisher: Oxford University Press