In 1964 I asked Arnold for a simple cello duet of a length to fill a double spread in a teaching book which I was writing with Anna Shuttleworth. In a matter of weeks the Duo for two cellos dropped through the letterbox: tuneful, cunningly laid out for players of limited technique, of exactly the hoped-for length. Materials are simple: a lyrical motif based on thirds; another of Arnold’s favoured rocking figures; contrasts of bowed and plucked notes and a hint of bitonality. A small but perfectly proportioned piece, with not a note nor a bar too many nor too few.
from notes by Hugo Cole © 1988