INTERFRET (2017)

INTERFRET (2017)

for guitar solo

instrumentation: gtr
duration: 8 minutes
première: September 6, 2017, Munich, Germany
ARD International Music Competition 2017, Semifinals

Commissioned by the ARD International Music Competition 2017, sponsored by Ernst von Siemens Music Foundation.

INTERFRET

score preview

Additional performances

June 23, 2020, Society of Slovene Composers, Ljubljana, Slovenia
Erazem Grafenauer – guitar
April 11, 2019, Academy of Music Ljubljana, Kazina Hall, Ljubljana, Slovenia
Jana Fridau – guitar
April 10, 2019, Kunstuniversität Graz, Austria
Jana Fridau – guitar
June 8, 2019, Theaterhaus Stuttgart, Germany
Klara Tomljanovič – guitar

VIDEO

INTERFRET: Full recording
Andrej Lebedev – guitar
©2017 BR
INTERFRET: Full recording
Izidor Erazem Grafenauer – guitar
INTERFRET: Full recording
Andrej Lebedev – guitar
©2017 BR
INTERFRET: Full recording
Izidor Erazem Grafenauer – guitar

ABOUT

INTERFRET is a showpiece for solo guitar that showcases both the guitar and the guitarist. The title refers to movement between the ‘frets’, the metal strips mounted perpendicular to the strings at ever decreasing intervals along the neck (or fretboard) of a guitar. In INTERFRET, liberal use of tapping, and of strumming techniques such as rasgueado, mean that guitaristic archetypes such as flamenco or classical guitar music seem at times just around the corner, but always just out of reach. As in the guitar writing of Helmut Lachenmann, the distinctive tuning of the guitar in fourths, with a single third between the second and third strings, can often be discerned lurking in the background, colouring the work’s harmony. In the case of INTERFRET, however, there is a twist, in that the tunings of three of the strings are altered by one quarter-tone each. The resulting effect is at once familiar and outlandish, in that a novel tuning is adopted not only, as so often, to overcome the soundscape of an instrument’s conventional tuning system, but also to celebrate it.

The liberal (and highly varied) use of a bottleneck and of percussive techniques lends the work many of the qualities we would normally associate with Žuraj’s writing for percussion, with its penchant for quasi-melodic contours made up of fragmentary glissandi and metallic timbres, but what is striking is how close the combination of the quarter-tone tuning and judicious employment of harmonics brings the harmonic flavour to Žuraj’s use of altered spectral chords in his works for ensemble.

INTERFRET was commissioned for the 2017 edition of the ARD International Music Competition and sponsored by the Ernst von Siemens Music Foundation.

Alwyn Tomas Westbrooke

INTERFRET is a showpiece for solo guitar that showcases both the guitar and the guitarist. The title refers to movement between the ‘frets’, the metal strips mounted perpendicular to the strings at ever decreasing intervals along the neck (or fretboard) of a guitar. In INTERFRET, liberal use of tapping, and of strumming techniques such as rasgueado, mean that guitaristic archetypes such as flamenco or classical guitar music seem at times just around the corner, but always just out of reach. As in the guitar writing of Helmut Lachenmann, the distinctive tuning of the guitar in fourths, with a single third between the second and third strings, can often be discerned lurking in the background, colouring the work’s harmony. In the case of INTERFRET, however, there is a twist, in that the tunings of three of the strings are altered by one quarter-tone each. The resulting effect is at once familiar and outlandish, in that a novel tuning is adopted not only, as so often, to overcome the soundscape of an instrument’s conventional tuning system, but also to celebrate it.
The liberal (and highly varied) use of a bottleneck and of percussive techniques lends the work many of the qualities we would normally associate with Žuraj’s writing for percussion, with its penchant for quasi-melodic contours made up of fragmentary glissandi and metallic timbres, but what is striking is how close the combination of the quarter-tone tuning and judicious employment of harmonics brings the harmonic flavour to Žuraj’s use of altered spectral chords in his works for ensemble.
INTERFRET was commissioned for the 2017 edition of the ARD International Music Competition and sponsored by the Ernst von Siemens Music Foundation.

1