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LABIA

Madrigal for string quartet
degree of difficuty: medium
duration: 10’ approx.
year of composition: 1982-1983
I performance: Roma, Teatro Ghione, 12.11.1984
Quartetto Nuova Cameristica
edizioni EdiPan, Roma
(the parts can be hired out)
live recording is available
WORK REGISTERED AT SIAE (Italian Authors and Publishers Association)


In his works written since 1980, the author has adopted a particular way of dealing with pitches which collocates an individual note within a figuration with one register only, not duplicating it in other octaves. Thanks to this treatment, melodic and harmonic figures bloom in which the notes are joined together with bonds of such reciprocal imprescriptability that any possibility of transposing them tends to be negated.

From this pitch strategy, which binds a figure to the fastness of its absolute register, Labia ('a madrigal for string quartet', 1982 but revised in 1983) wanders with harmonic sensibility and a propensity for developing through spontaneous proliferation, outstretched to activate simultaneous sounds as it is. Indeed, the piece draws its inner sense of necessity from the tendency of special synchronies to evolve, according to a completely immanent harmonic prospective. The characteristic of these synchronies is an intrinsic pathos, which pushes them from within in directions which are decided on the spur of the moment, so freeing their intimate drive. Of the two sections which comprise the piece, the first testifies to the prevalence of the aforementioned synchronies.The second section comes after an uninterrupted crescendo in the first, and is more agile and flowing. A numerically growing presence of chromatic appoggiature marked 'sforzato' springs from an initial, ethereal flux ('con sordina' and 'sul ponticello'), which articulates all of the binary sub-divisions of the bar. These appoggiature ruffle the surface of the piece's beginning. The flow is suspended with pauses lasting at least three seconds, coming at irregular intervals. The piece concludes with a brief allusion to the first section from which, however, no explicit element is 'reprised'.

Ecstatic moments of astonishment permeate the whole work, which are characteristic of the author's writing in those years. The musical philosophy of the piece is very distant from the results that the author has abtained since 1984 when he began to write pieces of a more lively dialectic, using a geometric-numeric conception of composition.