campi deserti

Premiered at

Konzerthaus, Vienna



Commissioned by PHACE
Premiered at Wiener Konzerthaus on 28.3.2023

Conductor | Yalda Zamani

flute, saxophone, bass clarinet
piano, percussion
violin cello, double bass
live electronics

Duration: 17'


Program note


"Solo e pensoso i piú deserti campi" is the first line from Petrarch's 35th canto of his poem cycle Canzoniere. Along with Orlando di Lasso and Claudio Monteverdi, Luca Marenzio also used this text for a madrigal. For the first two lines of the poem, the composer wrote a cantus firmus consisting of an ascending and then descending chromatic line that encompasses the entire ambitus.
campi deserti can also be translated as "wild fields" and, from the epoch of Kievan Rus until the 18th century, refers to the steppe landscape of what is now southern and eastern Ukraine, as well as the adjacent region of Pontocaspis, which lies in present-day Russia. Since these foothills of the Eurasian steppe have no natural barriers, they were transit areas for several nomadic and equestrian peoples moving from east to west from very early times. Although very fertile, this area remained undeveloped for a long time due to the constant threat of attacks by horsemen and remained sparsely populated until modern times.