Preparing – Remembering – A Room is a meditation on the space a performance inhabits. This includes the immediate space the performance is held, the surrounding city-scape or nature-scape of the performance community, and the internal space of the listener’s mind. It is a meditation on the stories that have passed through it, the timelines that defined its dimensions. Mediated through time, it is a wordless groan of hazy but persistent imagination. It swells and contorts in shape, as memory may do. It strains to document and longs in desire. It is warmed by nostalgia.
The electronics consist of field recordings taken of the city-scape and nature-scape of Denver.”
Karina Baras’ piece is a setting of the following poem:
F. I. Tjutchev
Speak not, lie hidden, and conceal
the way you dream, the things you feel.
Deep in your spirit let them rise
akin to stars in crystal skies
that set before the night is blurred:
delight in them and speak no word.
How can a heart expression find?
How should another know your mind?
Will he discern what quickens you?
A thought once uttered is untrue.
Dimmed is the fountainhead when stirred:
drink at the source and speak no word.
Live in your inner self alone
within your soul a world has grown,
the magic of veiled thoughts that might
be blinded by the outer light,
drowned in the noise of day, unheard…
take in their song and speak no word.
– V. Nabokov
légère fièvre, which is translated into “slight fever” in English, emphasizes the repetitive motifs and the delicate morphing patterns of sound. Breathing is one very important aspect of my compositions, and this piece is no exception, as I have given constant breathing cycles from the beginning to the end. “légère fièvre” was commissioned by the Nebula Ensemble in 2017, and was composed in Tokyo and P
Ciatu was inspired by a traditional chant from Sicily. The original melody though doesn’t appear openly in the piece. It haunts my work: it is everywhere and nowhere. I studied the song and I observed it as if under a microscope: melodic gestures, intervallic relationships and individual sounds (also in their harmonic structure) constitute therefore the root of my work.
I used also the text of the Sicilian chant, but not entirely. I’ve chosen the following verses:
Breath of mine soul, I think of you every time
I can’t love another creature
because I’m out of my mind for you
In my heart there is your figure.
I’ve elaborated the text with a series of repetitions so that I’ve obtained a dramatic text, in which the actor stages – like in a monolog – this story of great love. After an instrumental introduction, music dialogues with words and at the same time it broadens the meanings of them. The original Sicilian text ends with a farewell, I haven’t used final verses, nevertheless a melancholy tone is present in music.
I was born in Sicily, but for work I live in another place; this piece is for me, a kind of tender greeting to my land.
Stephen Bailey’s Program Note on Total Synthesis: D-Luciferin: