for chamber orchestra

Gustavo Díaz-Jerez

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for chamber orchestra

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Composer Gustavo Díaz-Jerez
Year of Composition 2010
Duration ca.14'

Categories (all composers) ,
Catalogue ID ce-gdj1a4


Aranfaybo is a Guanche word associated with the island of El Hierro. It literally means “the one that provokes rain”. According to conquistador Abreu Galindo (XVI century), the bimbaches (aborigines from El Hierro) invoked Aranfaybo in a place known as Tacuytunta (“place of invocation”), inside a cave called Asteheyta (“the help”), in which the prayer took place.

Aranfaybo was commissioned by the Hungarian Chamber Symphony Orchestra. The world premiere took place in Zagreb, Croatia, on November 19, 2008, under the batton of Alberto Roque, followed by a concert tour in 9 European countries.

Aranfaybo is structured in a single-movement Symphonic Poem of about 13 minutes. Much of the melodic and rhythmic material is derived from mathematical process involving the digits of the square root of 2. This mathematical framework, however, serves only as a scaffolding that brings unity and coherence to the work.

Formally, Aranfaybo follows a quasi-symmetric structure. Most forms in nature, and certainly almost all living beings exhibit clearly recognizable symmetries, in particular bilateral morphology (two halves joined together). One half mirrors the other with respect to the axis of symmetry. Aranfaybo uses this concept to generate its temporal structure. Having reached the climax of the work, the same material is presented again in retrograde motion. This procedure, however, does not unfold in a rigid and exact way, but, as in nature, undergoes innumerable modifications, both in orchestral texture, color, timbre, etc. This allows the listener to rediscover the work from another listening perspective, where the balance between expectation and surprise is kept alive, allowing the piece to speak about itself.

Premiere: November 19, 2008.  Zagreb, Croatia.  Hungarian Chamber Symphony Orchestra.  Alberto Roque, conductor.

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