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"Pizziguasa Galeónica" and "Pizziquitiplás" were composed in 1989-90, exploring the structural possibilities of traditional Venezuelan rhythms in concert forms. Their minimalistic textures are not local spinoffs of the American school, but real iterations of Venezuelan genres transposed to the medium of Western chamber music, developed using the tools of formal poetics and harmonic drift that written music allows, as opposed to their basic ethnic versions. These two pieces use the cello only in pizzicato, creating a new composite sound as it blends in with the harp, so perhaps we can see them as a duo for the flutes (in C in the first piece, and the alto in G in the second), and a larger meta- instrument formed by the harp and the plucked cello. Harp and cello thus form a tight rhythmic and harmonic pair, an interwoven basket of sound upon which the flute develops lines and interlocking motifs, in two different Venezuelan time-signatures: the 5/8 "guasa" (or "banter") and the 3/4-6/8 "golpe de quitiplás" (an Afro-Venezuelan genre played on bamboo percussion). The first piece, in 5/8 is dreamy and smooth, with occasional geometric riffs punctuating thematic material, between stretches of textural landscapes and buildups.


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Pizziguasa Galeonica - Trio - Flute, Harp & Cello

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