‘Scintilla’ by Marek Pasieczny is an evocation of the spatial and spiritual musical expression of the mystical Estonian composer Arvo Pärt. First composed for solo piano, subsequent versions for solo guitar, guitar duo and now guitar quartet have further explored the atmospheric possibilities of this work.
Using an unusual scordatura of low G natural on the sixth string and G# on the fifth, Pasieczny creates a totally unique sonic texture in this riveting and finely detailed score. Beginning with a mysterious ostinato, the piece unfolds with brooding open harmonies and ominous dissonances. This prepares the entrance of the „Psalm”, with a cantus firmus-like exposition of a fragment from one of Pärt’s vocal works. Building in intensity with wave-like chordal crests, the work ultimately drifts back to a gentle undulating close.
Scintilla represents an original and welcome addition to the serious repertoire for guitar quartet.
(LAGQ | Los Angeles Guitar Quartet)