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Fernando Zóbel (1924-1984)



Exequias (In memoriam Fernando Zóbel) / Exequy (In memoriam Fernando Zóbel)

For Gregorian choir, mixed choir and orchestra


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Commentary


At the beginning of 1984, after receiving from the director of the Cuenca Religious Music Week, Pablo López de Osaba, the commission to compose a work to be premiered at the 24th edition of said festival, I was considering various themes, some very attractive, without finally deciding on any of them. At that time I learned the sad news of the death of the painter Fernando Zóbel, and a few days later I attended his funeral, in the San Isidro de Cuenca cemetery.
This last fact caused that my not very clear projects regarding the work-commission of the Religious Music Week were abandoned -or perhaps postponed- and replaced by a tribute to the memory of Zóbel, idea that captivated me from the beginning by the lots of coincidences that occurred in it: the relationship between Cuenca and Zóbel, as well as between Zóbel and music, and my own musical relationship with Cuenca and Zóbel ...
I met Fernando Zóbel in July 1982, at the premiere of my opera Ligazón, held in the Church of San Pablo in Cuenca. Throughout that same month, the 1st International Music Course for Young Performers was held at the Cuenca Music Conservatory, of which I was at the time a teacher and secretary. Zóbel attended almost daily the chamber music classes taught by Luis Rego, open to all who wanted to hear them. A great music lover (the flute was his favorite instrument, which he even played), he took notes and sketches in a notebook that caught my attention due to its small size. During those days I dealt with him frequently, although always within a crowded and humorous environment, made up of students from the course, who did not invite to have an interesting conversation with him, something that I did not succeed neither then nor after. Later I saw him very few times, always in Cuenca and always in some musical act.
It would be useless for me to try to gloss over the figure of Fernando Zóbel here. I just want to record my admiration for him, the artist and the person. And I am moved to say, precisely in these notes, that one of the strongest impressions I have received in my life was the arrival of the coffin containing his mortal remains at the Cathedral of Cuenca. The overwhelming silence with which they were received in the Plaza Mayor, packed with absolutely disparate people; the funeral; the march on foot to the San Isidro cemetery ...
It was precisely during that march that the germ of Exequias emerged. The primitive idea, purely instrumental, wanted to be a "Procession to the cemetery", but little by little it developed, enriching itself with the introduction of material taken from the Gregorian liturgy, which led me to the composition of a "Requiem Mass" based on the current liturgy (Introitus, Graduale, Alleluia, Tractus, Offertorium and Communio), to which I decided to add one more number: Processio ad cœmeterium. The structure of the old requiem (let's remember the famous ones by Mozart, Verdi, Berlioz), more gloomy and tremendous, did not fit my purposes as well as the current one, more hopeful (suffice it to highlight a great difference between one and the other: the substitution of the Dies irae by the Alleluia). I also decided not to use the term "Requiem" as the title of the work, to avoid odious comparisons, and to use the word "Exequias" instead.

Poster by Grau Santos for the XXIV Cuenca Religious Music Week

Exequias (In memoriam Fernando Zóbel) was written in Cuenca and Madrid, between the months of September and December 1984. In addition to a Gregorian choir and a mixed chamber choir, I use the following instrumental template: flutes in C and in G , bass clarinet, bassoon, two horns, two trumpets, two trombones, piano, percussion and a small string group. Given the long duration of the work (around 45 minutes) and the density of its writing, I tried from the beginning to distribute the material at my disposal to achieve sufficient contrasts in the instrumentation of the various numbers. Only in the last one, Processio ad cœmeterium, do I use the full orchestral template. Each instrumental or choral-instrumental number is preceded by the Gregorian chant typical of the mass for the dead.

Program of the premiere of Exequias (in memoriam Fernando Zóbel)

Exequias was premiered on April 3, 1985 in the Church of San Miguel in Cuenca, performed by the Schola Gregoriana Hispana choir, the "Villa de Madrid" choir conducted by José María Barquín, and the Madrid Symphony Orchestra, all of them conducted by José Ramón Encinar.


Greeting after the premiere of Exequias (In memoriam Fernando Zóbel).
Cuenca, old church of San Miguel, April 3, 1985

With José Ramón Encinar, conductor of the premiere.

In 2014 it was released on CD by the Ziryab Choir and the Córdoba Orchestra under the direction of José Luis Temes. Four movements from said recording (I. Introitus; II. Graduale; III. Alleluia; and V. Offertorium) served as the basis for the third number of the "Luz Project (Illuminated Spanish Symphonism)" by José Luis Temes, which under the title Exequias para Fernando Zóbel was presented in 2018, and in 2019 was included in the DVD of the first volume ("Luz I-IV") of said project.

With Javier Sáenz-López, José Luis Temes, Javier Monteverde and the Ziryab Choir,
at the end of the recording of Exequias (Córdoba, May 2013)

Cover of the CD of the Córdoba Orchestra and the Ziryab Choir
conducted by José Luis Temes (2014)

Cover of the DVD Luz Project (2019)
(See trailer at the end of this page)


Finally, here is the formal plan of Exequias, with the texts corresponding to each section:


I. Introitus

a) Gregorian choir:
Requiem aeternam dona eis, Domine,
et lux perpetua luceat eis.
Give them, Lord, eternal rest,
and may the eternal light illuminate them.


b) Choral-instrumental number. Ricercare with 11 parts (strings) on a theme derived from Gregorian chant.In the center of the piece, the choir, supported by the bass clarinet, the bassoon and the two horns, responds with the second part of the antiphon:

Te decet hymnus, Deus in Sion,
et tibi reddetur votum in Ierusalem.
Qui audis orationem,
ad te omnis caro veniet
propter iniquitatem.
They will sing hymns to you, God, in Zion,
and vows will be offered to you in Jerusalem.
You who hear the prayers
all mortals come to you
because of their wickedness.


Subsequently, the ricercare undergoes retrogradation, slowly dying out.


Recording: Córdoba Orchestra and Ziryab Choir (Cond.: José Luis Temes)

I. Introitus

First page of the Introitus of Exequias (In memoriam Fernando Zóbel)


II. Graduale

a) Gregorian choir:

Si ambulem in medio umbrae mortis
non timebo mala,
quoniam tu mecum es, Domine.
Although I walk in the middle of the shadow of death
I will fear no evil,
because you are with me.


b) Instrumental number. The mysterious character of the text is evoked through the tones of the G flute, the bass clarinet and various percussion instruments (exclusively untuned membranes: tom-toms, bongo drums, bass drum, tambourine, drums and tumbadoras). The dialogue established between the two wooden instruments, accompanied by percussion, acquires a scherzo character in the central section.


II. Graduale

First page of the Graduale of Exequias (In memoriam Fernando Zóbel)


III. Alleluia

a) Gregorian choir:
Alleluia.
Laetatus sum in his quae dicta sunt mihi:
In domus Domini ibimus.
Hallelujah.
I was glad when I was told:
We will go to the house of the Lord.


b) Mainly choral number, with some wood and brass supports, as well as piano and percussion. The text of the mixed choir is the same as that used by the Gregorian choir. The tonal element appears clearly, harmonizing the first notes of the Gregorian Alleluia. In the first section four soloists and the choir alternate. The second consists basically of the superposition of four Gregorian alleluia: the voices, starting from unison, slowly divide until reaching a division into twenty parts, of purely melismatic writing. A third section closes this number, recalling the first and consolidating the tonal climate.


III. Alleluia

First page of the Alleluia of Exequias (In memoriam Fernando Zóbel)


IV. Tractus

a) Gregorian choir:

De profundis clamavi ad te, Domine.
Domine, exaudi vocem meam.
From the depths I call you, Lord.
Lord, hear my voice.


b) An instrumental number follows, the longest of the entire work, by bass clarinet, bassoon, horns, trumpets, trombones, piano and percussion. Recalling the Gregorian text, the instruments start from their lowest sounds until they reach the highest. The drama is broken by a new scherzo, basically in charge of the piano, which immediately resolves in the return to bass sounds. A very short coda with high pitched sounds brings the piece to its end.


IV. Tractus

First page of the Tractus of Exequias (In memoriam Fernando Zóbel)


V. Offertorium

a) Gregorian choir:

Miserere mihi, Domine,
secundum magnam misericordiam tuam.
Dele Domine iniquitatem meam.
Have mercy on me Lord
according to your great mercy.
Lord, forgive my faults.


b) Choral-instrumental number. It is a figurative coral in the classical way in terms of shape. Each of the verses

Illumina oculos meos
nequando obdormiam in morte,
nequando dicat inimicus meus
praevalui adversus eum.
Light up my eyes
so that I do not sleep in death,
that my enemy cannot say:
I have mastered it.


is separated from the others by a more or less extensive fragment of music by the strings, always in a fortissimo nuance. The chord fragments are written in an absolutely serial language, while those of the chorus consist of a fully tonal harmonization of the Gregorian harmony. The chorus is accompanied by a sound support by the flute in G, the bass clarinet, the bassoon and the marimba.


V. Offertorium

First page of the Offertorium of Exequias (In memoriam Fernando Zóbel)


VI. Communio

a) Gregorian choir:

Lux aeterna luceat eis, Domine,
cum sanctis tuis in aeternum,
quia pius es.

Levabo oculos meos in montes,
unde veniet auxilium mihi?

Lux aeterna luceat eis, Domine,
cum sanctis tuis in aeternum,
quia pius es.
Let perpetual light shine before your eyes
together with the Saints and for all eternity,
for your mercy.

I look up at the mountains.
Where will help come from?

Let perpetual light shine before your eyes
together with the Saints and for all eternity,
for your mercy.


b) Cadence for solo flute, based on the final cell of the Gregorian chant "quia pius es". Seamlessly, it links directly to the last number:


VII. Processio ad cœmeterium

a) The complete instrumental template is used in this number, as well as the two choirs. The Latin text

Sitivit anima mea ad Deum vivum
quando veniam, et aparebo ante faciem Domini?
My soul thirsts for the living God.
When will I enter to see the face of God?


serves as cantus firmus to a development of strings and woods, in which little by little the "climax" is reached, the high point of the procession:

Quaemadmodum desiderat cervus fontes aquarum,
ita desiderat anima mea ad te, Deus.
As the deer lusts for the streams of water,
this is how my soul wishes you, Lord.


The retrogradation of the first section, until reaching a barely perceptible pianissimo, marks the end of the processional march, as well as that of the work.


VI. Communio
VII. Processio ad cœmeterium

First page of the Processio ad cœmeterium of Exequias (In memoriam Fernando Zóbel)


Enlace YouTube:

I. Introitus
II. Graduale
III. Alleluia
IV. Tractus
V. Offertorium
VI. Communio
VII. Processio ad cœmeterium


Video


Luz Project (Illuminated Spanish Symphonism). Trailer for Luz III: Exequias for Fernando Zóbel


1) Córdoba Orchestra and Ziryab Choir (cond.: Javier Sáenz-López). Cond.: José Luis Temes
Recording made by Cezanne Producciones. Sound engineer: Javier Monteverde
Logo and graphic design: Clara Deguines-Guillem
Cameras and video production: Julia R. de Haro and Marta Berzal (4 in Raya Productions)
Idea, script and video direction: José Luis Temes

LUZ III was sponsored by the Impulsa Foundation (Junta de Castilla-La Mancha), with the collaboration of the Juan March Foundation



2) Concert-Tribute to Fernando Zóbel on the centenary of his birth and the 40th anniversary of his death


Spanish Radio Television Orchestra & Choir (Cond.: José Luis Temes)
61st Religious Music Week
Cuenca Teatro-Auditorio, March 27, 2024

I) Introito


II) Graduale


III) Alleluia


IV) Tractus


V) Offertorium


VI) Communio; and VII) Processio ad cœmeterium



Reviews



"Exequias", by José Luis Turina, is premiered on Wednesday
By Fernando Ruiz-Coca
(Article published in the newspaper Ya. Madrid, April 2, 1985)


Within the Cuenca Religious Music Week, next Wednesday the work of José Luis Turina "Exequias" will be premiered, composed in memory of the painter Fernando Zóbel, by the Arbós Symphony Orchestra, under the direction of José Ramón Encinar, in the old San Miguel's Church.

It is not easy to carry with dignity a surname like that of Joaquín Turina, which his grandson, José Luis, is revalidating, although by very different paths, of course, from his grandfather's. Both testify to his time. To the extent that the cultural situation differs from one to the other, their works, by which we know his personality, define those of both.
The young Turina was born in Madrid in 1952. His university and musical studies -were his teachers in composition García Abril, Bernaola and Rodolfo Halffter, from which the variety of the incitements received can be deduced, later extended in Rome with Franco Donatoni- were not limited to the field of creation. Thus he also studied with Calés, Sopeña, Gallego, García Asensio, Genoveva Gálvez, Kriales and Carra. He is therefore a composer with very broad technical and aesthetic horizons, which does not mean that he has ended up in eclecticism. There is in his works, always seriously constructed, a double aspect: the conscientious structuring and a warm and close expressiveness, one in function of the other, which, without losing quality, makes them easily accessible.
There are thirty-six composed scores, most of them chamber music, although there are no shortage of incursions into opera, as in "Ligazón", which uses texts by Valle Inclán, premiered in Cuenca three years ago; or "Sin orden ni concierto", a radio story for adults, with which the SER participated in the famous "Prix Italia", in 1983. Nor is orchestral creation alien to it: let's remember "Punto de encuentro", awarded by the Orchestra From Valencia; or "Pentimento", which, commissioned by the National Orchestra, premiered last year, under the direction of López Cobos. His "Crucifixus", page of impressive strength, was a finalist in the Golden Harp contest of the Savings Banks.
Like his grandfather, teaching occupies part of his time. He has been a professor of composition and director of the Cuenca Conservatory from 1981 to 1984. Today he teches harmony in Madrid. Now, for YA, he comments on his "Exequias (in memoriam Fernando >óbel)".

Prereview
By José Luis Turina

"Exequias (In memoriam Fernando Zóbel)" was composed in Cuenca, between the months of September to December 1984, obeying a commission from the Religious Music Week and in order to be premiered in April 1985, during the XXIV edition of the Festival.
There were many coincidences that occurred so that the commission was gradually configured and acquired its final form. On the one hand, my connection to the city of Cuenca, where I lived from 1981 to 1985, by virtue of my occupation as a teacher, secretary and later director of its Conservatory of Music. On the other, having made friends with Fernando Zóbel there; having learned the news of his death shortly after receiving the commission; having attended the impressive ceremony of his burial in the Cuenca de San Isidro cemetery ... All of this led me towards a work in which these coincidences would somehow meet. The result has been a requiem mass dedicated to the memory of Fernando Zóbel, with the title of "Exequias".
Aesthetically speaking, "Exequias" is a logical consequence of the evolution of my musical thought. Basically atonal, it is often peppered with tonal and even modal fragments derived from the use of the Gregorian quotations that precede each of the seven numbers and that serve as a connecting link between each of them. The template (Gregorian choir, mixed chamber choir and chamber orchestra -wood, brass, percussion, piano and strings-) is not presented in its entirety until the last number of the work, in order to achieve a certain tonal variety, essential given the dimensions of the score (about forty-five minutes).
I think that "Exequias" is a work that can easily reach the public, even those not very used to current music. Tension often gives way to relaxation of a very playful nature, which can greatly facilitate following the musical discourse without too much trouble. In any case, it is my heartfelt tribute to one of the most important figures in contemporary art.


Exequias (in memoriam Fernando Zóbel)
By Carlos Gómez Amat
(Review read in the program De Música (S.E.R.). Madrid, April 4, 1985)

We were talking yesterday about the expectation aroused by the new work by José Luis Turina, commissioned by the 1985 Week. Today we can affirm that such expectation was fully justified, since Exequias, premiered in San Miguel, is one of the most considerable works in the composer's catalog. In a lucid note on the play program, exemplary as regards the explanation of motives and achievements, Turina refers to the genesis and development of this kind of Requiem that he has written in memory of the great painter Fernando Zóbel, who loved Cuenca and rests in its cemetery.
We can refer, then, to a first motive of a romantic nature, since the musician confesses his emotional impression at the funeral of his admired friend. Hence the work, which ends precisely with what, in the Latin language, is entitled Procession to the cemetery. Everything else can have a liturgical character, even if it is not intended for the celebration, but for the concert. The work is long; It lasts more than fifty minutes, but its clever division and continuous variety mean that it never weighs down.
We admire in Exequias, not only the beautiful quality of the music and the technical, harmonic and contrapuntal display, but also the historical approach, of aesthetic quality, with which a kind of artistic-religious synthesis is produced, from the moving primitivism of the Gregorian up to the absolutely free current language, passing through the tonal, the atonal and the serial. José Luis Turina thus offers us mature music, an art born of knowledge and reflection, applied to one's own emotions. The author was applauded and acclaimed along with his interpreters.
It was a great version. José Ramón Encinar is a contemporary specialist, always analytical and confident. He has understood the work and has unraveled its secret. Very well the Schola Gregoriana Hispana directed by Francisco Javier Lara, a prestigious Gregorianist who comes from the Silos school. The Villa de Madrid Choir, directed by José María Barquín, is a group of merit. The chamber group of the Arbós orchestra sounds and works perfectly, with young elements.
We have talked about variety on the new Turina page. This variety leads us to prefer the moments when the choir performs with the instrumental group, and of course that ending in which everyone comes together in a very successful expressive amalgam.
[...]


Triumphal premiere of "Exequias", by José Luis Turina
By Fernando Ruiz-Coca
(Review published in the newspaper Ya. Madrid, April 5, 1985)


For yet another year, these Cuenca concerts are maintaining the high interest that have given them international fame, as evidenced by various foreign musicologists and critics -among them, Longchamps, from "Le Monde", from Paris- who come to listen to them as the just sonorous counterpoint of the celebrations of these holydays.
The greatest interest was in the world premiere of "Exequias", by José Luis Turina (Madrid, 1952), grandson of the famous composer of this surname to whom he honors, composed in memory of the painter Fernando Zóbel, founder of the Museum of Abstract Art of this city. It is a three-quarter hour long requiem mass on Latin liturgical texts. The success has been great, unanimous and deserved. The young Turina, who has among his teachers García Abril, Bernaola and Rodolfo Halffter, possesses a very concrete compositional technique, which serves as a solid basis for, not dwelling on it, doing what, ultimately, matters: loud and convincing communicativeness. Summing up, we could say that he builds with a highly expressive structuralism.
Each part of the mass begins with the Gregorian chant, which is then glossed, commented and developed in the perfectly assembled orchestra and choir. Thus, in the deep and mysterious "Graduale", in which the percussion places him in the inheritance, very personally assimilated, of Bartok; in the "Alleluia", which replaces the usual "Dies irae", the Gregorian unison unfolds in a very rich polyphony of twenty real parts. The "Tractus", "De profundis clamavi", in an admirable closed form, beginning in the grave region, goes up to the treble, with a descriptive sense of the sentence. The functional superimposition of the strict serial system is very intelligent and effective in the "Offertorium", as a background for the tonal harmonization that the choir sings of the Gregorian. In the "Communio" we find a melancholic flute solo, to connect with the last fragment, "Processio ad cœmeterium", in a growing tension that leads to an overwhelming climate, which is divided towards the end of the work.
Turina confirms in this score some knowledge that allows him to say what he wants at all times, meaning a lot, thus placing himself among the most attractive figures of his generation.
All this was exposed with clarity and vigor by José Ramón Encinar, a conductor who, at thirty-one years old, reveals himself in each of his concerts as the most promising Spanish youth baton. The Schola Gregoriana Hispana, prepared by Francisco Javier Lara; the Villa de Madrid choir, directed by José María Barquín, and a chamber group from the Arbós orchestra, were the lucky interpreters of the extremely difficult work.
[...]


"Exequias", by José Luis Turina, relevant world premiere
By Leopoldo Hontañón
(Review published in the newspaper ABC. Madrid, April 5, 1985)


Here is one of the concerts in which the servitude of the valuation of the space most deplores: the one held on the afternoon of Holy Wednesday in the old church of San Miguel. I would have to comment, with more extension of the telegraph that I am going to use, many things. His attention -with the presence of the young author of the commissioned work and also a young director, both Spanish- to the International Year of Youth; the identical attention to the European of Music with the programming of "The seven words of Christ on the Cross", by Heinrich Schutz, on the fourth centenary of his birth; the memory, through the premiered work, who was closely linked to the cultural events of Cuenca, Fernando Zóbel; the wonderful previous concerts that the magnificent groups Coro Gulbenkian, directed by Fernando Eldoro, and The Tallis Scholars had starred on Monday and Tuesday, and, of course, the work-commission itself and its translation, are the main ones. But it is only possible, and this by narrowing the judgments as much as possible, to write about the concert in particular.
The assistance of José Luis Turina (1952) to the funeral of Fernando Zóbel; The very vivid impression caused by the overwhelming silence with which his remains were received in the Plaza Mayor of Cuenca and the subsequent walk to the San Isidro cemetery, were the reasons that led him to turn the commission of the XXIV Week into a tribute to the memory of the painter. "During that march," says the composer, "the germ of Exequias emerged. The original idea, purely instrumental, wanted to be a Procession to the cemetery, but little by little it was developed, enriching itself with the introduction of material taken from the Gregorian liturgy, which led to the composition of a Requiem Mass based on the current liturgy, to which I decided to add one more number: Processio ad cœmeterium".
So far the author. For my part, I must immediately say that "Exequias" -written for Gregorian choir and mixed chamber choir, with ensemble, in addition to flutes, bass clarinet, bassoon, horns, trumpets, trombones, piano, percussion and a small string group- seemed to me one of the most important Spanish pages that could have been composed by authors of a similar age, or younger, than Turina currently has. Perfect in its formal approach, absolutely nothing heavy, in none of the ample forty-five minutes of its course, there are another two, however, the notes that I think characterize it more clearly: its rich expressive variability and the excellent explanatory clarity of creative thinking and ideation. Both notes that find base and foundation in three contrasting dichotomies -apart, of course, from the one that confronts the Gregorian with the current-, so teleologically appropriate to the commission, as splendidly worked: regret-hope, for the general climate of the work; tonalism-atonalism (in the broad sense of the latter term), as an expressive-structural procedure, while assisting in the achievement of the previous characterological binomial; and camerismo-"tutti" orchestral. This outline of analysis could be further developed. Subtle passages of the persecuted bittersweet climate could be pointed out; reviewing the successive instrumental formations, so intelligently arranged, or the skillful simultaneities of the tonal and the non-tonal; relate, changing everything that has to be changed, of course, the parachameristic treatment of separate groups -the complete template is used only in the final "processio "-, with systems used in our best avant-garde of 51 (I think in "Heterofonías" or in "Impulses", by Bernaola) ... All this is simply noted.
The version that José Ramón Encinar (1954) gave us of the premiere seems exemplary to me. It seems to me that he knew how not only to give unity to the whole, which is complicated by the prosodic and intentional diversification of his episodes, but also to underline the multiple internal details that progressively highlight the text. The Schola Gregoriana Hispana, the Coro Villa de Madrid and the Chamber Group of the Arbós Orchestra responded in a magnificent way.
[...]


Exequy in memory of Fernando Zóbel
By Álvaro Guibert
(Review published in the online magazine El Español. Madrid, April 9, 2024)
Tribute to Fernando Zóbel (1924-1985) at the Week of Religious Music in Cuenca. In the world and in Spain, Zóbel was an artist of marked personality whose paintings are unmistakably his own. In Cuenca, he was one of the pillars of an astonishingly rich cultural life.
With Zóbel at the helm, Cuenca has since become the center of gravity for abstraction in art. Additionally, our best composers and the great international performers have been coming to Cuenca for over half a century to make the Easter celebrations resound between processions.
This year, the concert on Holy Wednesday was dedicated to Zóbel, the great painter and amateur flautist. The RTVE Orchestra and Choir performed under the direction of José Luis Temes, and as almost always happens with this conductor, the program consisted entirely of living composers.
[…]
Then, Exequias (In Memoriam Fernando Zóbel) was performed, a masterpiece for Gregorian choir and chamber orchestra and choir commissioned by the Week in 1985 from to Luis Turina. The piece sounded with expressive and evocative force.
It is clearly funeral music, conveying a sense of overwhelming emotion at Zóbel's death, but also hope and a certain serenity that links it to Fauré. Humans do not tremble with guilt, nor do days of wrath announce themselves.
On the contrary, the audience leaves humming the seven notes of an alleluia —meaning joy and praise— that Turina arranges in luminous F major, although even more beautiful is what comes next: an exhibition of 20 different alleluias superimposed. Upon hearing the choir split into 20 different voices chanting alleluia! I don't know why I thought of Messiaen's Preaching to the Birds.
Exequias progresses along two parallel paths: plainchant introduces a cappella the parts of the requiem mass, which are then elaborated in multiple ways, some of them unforgettable, by the orchestra and mixed choir. In the initial ricercare, the string instruments project the Gregorian line upwards or downwards in bursts that, very much in the style of Zóbel, blur the straight line and open it to new dimensions.
At the end of this number, the dryness of the ricercare sparks suggestive moments as it clashes with the smoothness of the choir, and in the Offertorium, a classical chorale once again confronts the harshness of the strings, which this time carry a serial discourse. Also very effective is the journey from darkness to light, de profundis ad te, from the depths to you, in the Tractus.
Turina makes this journey through two successive paths, one perhaps stoic and the other mystical: darkness is abandoned first in a sinuous and gradual manner, and then directly, with a quick leap. In both cases, the richness of color and nuance that the author achieves in the ultra-low register remains in the ear, where usually one hears an undifferentiated blackness.
And one last unforgettable moment: the cadence of the flute alone over the notes of quia pius es, a motif with a touch of nursery rhyme that once again brings these Exequias closer to Fauré's Pie Jesu. In this simplest of melodies, the flute unfolds a thousand colors by merely jumping from octave to octave.
In addition to stimulating the performance of this concert, Temes added a cinematic prologue: the screening of the documentary Luz 3: Exequias for Fernando Zóbel, which he himself produced and directed in 2019, is an impressive audiovisual testimony about Cuenca, the Museum of Abstract Art, Zóbel, and Turina.
[...]



Download pdfs

(Complete scores and parts without watermarks available at www.asesores-musicales.com )

General score of Exequias (In memoriam Fernando Zóbel)

Score for Choir and Piano reduction of Exequias (In memoriam Fernando Zóbel)