Live recording of M° Marco Ramelli, Saturday, March 25th, performing his composition “Improvvisazione Chiaroscuro” composed and dedicated to the Roma Expo Guitars 2023, within the “New Music for REG” project.
Composing a piece dedicated to REG provided me with the opportunity to create a work aimed at strengthening my listening to the guitar. Throughout the composition process, I approached the guitar as an active participant in the creative process. To achieve this, I employed a simpler language than in my previous works and incorporated elements of improvisation and scordatura during the piece, which forced me to have a heightened sensitivity to the guitar’s functioning and sonic nuances during the performance.
Divided into three parts, this composition is part of a series of “rituals” I am creating for diverse musicians.
The first and last sections are inspired by my previous studio sonoro, “Mappa per l’ascolto” (Map for Listening), conceived as a map for the musician, not the listener. The score indicates moments where the musician must listen closely to the space between the notes, encouraging interaction, manipulation, and attentive listening and allowing the musician to form their unique dialogue with the sound and the guitar.
The middle section draws inspiration from a meditative exercise I use to strengthen my perception of the guitar’s vibration and sound. I pluck the bass strings, focusing on the breath and the precise moment of separation between string and finger. This section features an ostinato in “tempo di cammino,” a flexible walk that adjusts tempo according to the melodic expression. The melody repeats the same material, with develop with one note modified each time and an extra note added to extend the melodic element until one dissonant repeated note clashes with the ostinato in the basses.
The resolution is achieved through the repeated execution of the same dissonant section, changing one note at a time until consonance is restored. A process to address difficulty by taking it one step at a time. The second time the section appears, the dissonances are resolved through the scordatura of the ostinato, and the bass adapts to the melodic note.
The title, “Improvvisazione Chiaroscuro,” reflects the piece’s use of different scordatura in different sections. The tuning changes happen during short improvisation moments integral to the composition. The opening and closing sections are inspired by Chandra Candiani’s poetry “Mappa per l’ascolto,” which lends its name to the studio sonoro. Video: the Curciotti brothers Audio: Leonardo Gallucci 2023, all right reserved to Chitarra In musical association