Charles Halka - Liaisons (2015) for clarinet, horn, vibraphone, and cello


Composition professor Charles Halka's "Liaisons" (2015) was inspired by an art installation, Mountains of Encounter, by artist Haegue Yang.

The installation itself was motivated by the story of an American journalist in Shanghai who met secretly with a Korean revolutionary several times in the 1930s.

While "Liaisons" is written for a quartet, most of the music consists of duets, allowing each individual instrument to speak freely with each of the others and have meaningful dialogue (see below for specific start times for each duet), away from the public eye represented by the entire (and more impersonal) ensemble.

The work was commissioned by Musiqa for performance in Yang’s installation during its time at the Contemporary Arts Museum Houston. Recorded May 27, 2015 Maiko Sasaki, clarinet, Kate Caliendo, horn, Craig Hauschildt, percussion, Patrick Moore, cello. Music by Charles Halka.

Start times for each duet

  • 1:23 - clarinet and vibraphone
  • 3:56 - clarinet and horn
  • 5:34 - vibraphone and cello
  • 8:41 - clarinet and cello
  • 10:30 - horn and cello
  • 12:24 - horn and vibraphone

Music (2015) and video (2020) copyright by Charles Halka. All rights reserved.