String Quartet No. 3


String Quartet (2011)

I. Abozzo grezzo
II. Grafitti on Webern's Op. 9, No. 5
III. Epitaffio 9/11

Written for the quartet Cuerdas Revueltas.

Score Sample

Duration: c. 20-25 minutes

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My Third String Quartet bears the subtitle “Raddoppiamenti” which in Italian means “doublings”—referring specifically to the use of double consonants in that language.

The first movement, called Abbozzo grezzo, or “rough sketch”, is based on an intense,  rhythmic motive in 5/8 time, and whose main contrasting feature occurs when the first violinist remembers a fragment of Bach’s Toccata in d minor for organ and gives it a try in 5.

The second movement, Graffiti on Webern’s Op. 9, No. 5 takes a Bagatelle by Anton Webern and tries to transform it from an atonal piece into a minimalistic work, sort of in the key of d minor.

The idea of doublings also led me to think of the twin towers of the World Trade Center in New York City, so that the final movement, Epitaffio 9/11, then becomes an elegy to the victims of the 9/11 terrorist attacks. The movement is without meter, and to be performed very freely, each instrument taking turns as soloist, with the accompanying instruments sustaining a drone on G and D throughout.