John Zorn

Aporias: Requia for Piano & Orchestra

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John Zorn dedicated this "requia for piano and orchestra" to all artists, explaining that he named this composition Aporias ("aporia" meaning an impossible passage), in reference to those passages that separate life from death. Appropriately, the first three sections of this modern orchestral work are elusive, a crinoline fog of overtones emanating from various parts of the orchestra, be it the string section, or the boy sopranos of the Hungarian radio children's choir. The immediate opening lures you in with a few familiar quotes, but soon the composition heads into otherworldly passages, with an exploratory treatment. In the midst of this, during "Risentito," syncopated hand claps emerge, the only explicitly solid sounds (besides the occasional piano). "Freddamente," the brass restates a fragment of the hand claps' structure, echoed by the flutes. With a range of bass drums, Eastern percussion hints, and interjections of orchestral warm-up moments, this short composition slips by in the shadows, remaining obscured even while enunciating.

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