In my work on my new composition for solo cello and soprano, Anthemoessa, I've felt a little stuck at times. My background in composition has largely been in forms where harmony guides the construction of the piece, such as choral or voice/piano works. Consequently, writing a piece for melodically-based performing forces has proved slightly challenging for me. Additionally, cello is not a medium I am used to, so writing for cello has been a new experience. Fortunately, in my research, I have been able to discover extended playing techniques for the cello which can provide the affect I desire and replace analogous affects of harmony, such as harmonics, advanced pizzicato techniques, col legno, and multiple stops.
Listen to this piece by Iannis Xenakis, a 20th Century Greek composer, for solo cello, that utilizes some of these extended playing techniques. As someone with relatively little experience with solo cello repertoire, this piece was fascinating to me in terms of the unbelievable range of the instrument.