Lydia Kakabadse: Recitativo Arioso + Variations – for “alternative” string quartet (NXP083)
This is a sheet music edition of Recitativo Arioso + Variations by the composer Lydia Kakabadse.
Sheet music for “alternative” string quartet (violin, viola, cello, double bass)
Duration: ca. 11 minutes
Score: 26 pages
Parts: 22 pages
Preface and Programme Notes
Adapted in part from an earlier work for different instrumentation, this work for violin, viola, cello and double bass was completed in 2012. Inspired by the recitativo arioso – a quasi-lyrical expressive recitative – the work includes variations on the recitative and arioso themes.
Following an introductory recitative in C minor, the violin announces the two themes of the arioso. The first, played in the violin’s lower register is lyrical and flowing, whilst the second theme – later taken up by the cello - is lullaby-like. A short passage played in the high register of the three upper strings precedes a reintroduction of the first theme, played by the cello with bass accompaniment. Changes in tempo and key herald the recitative, which is in stark contrast to the arioso. Following a short fugue-like passage, the mood changes dramatically and becomes soothing and tranquil with the return of the second theme played andante dolce in C major. There is a shift to a more serious and melancholic mood as this theme is played by the viola in the tonic minor during the closing section.
This variation transforms the original second theme of the arioso into new thematic material characterized by staccato playing at the outset and fast semi-quaver passages by each instrument (including pizzicato and arco bass). There follows a return to the lullaby, played mezzo-piano in the tonic major.
Adding rhythmic and some melodic decoration to the main theme of the recitative, this variation is played by each of the instruments in a canon-like fashion. There are frequent arco pizzicato changes, embellishments and fast runs as well as changes of mood and short responsorial playing.