À Memória do meu Sótão op.120

António Victorino D' Almeida (1940)

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À Memória do meu Sótão op.120

“To the memory of my Attic”   

(music for harp, percussion and celesta), op. 120    

(celesta, harp and 6 percussionists) 

Old houses attics usually have a very important significance to everybody’s childhood memories. There we find our old toys, and there we found in the past our father’s toys, and our father’s father’s toys…The attic is a mythic place and its memory bound us to the most profound of our beings - in many cases, to the purest part of us - subconsciously.It is the connection we make to those times when everybody – or almost everybody - where taller than we were… as well as to a sweet memory of a time that most of those “tall people” used to take care of us with an extreme heed and tenderness…With these thoughts, I brought together two of the most fragile instruments of an orquestra – the harp and the celesta - to the “heavy ordenance” of percussion. When neglected their generous potentials, they are usually played only to make noise…At the premiere of this piece, I was touched with the affection, the real tenderness, taken by kettle drum, large drum, xylophone, tamtam, plates, and all those who make part of a great orquestra’s percussion (or a military band even…) to the harp and celesta. They let the last two express them, or yet dominate the piece completely…Besides, the attic is also the place where you find, among other ancient things, those real old records – the joy of our fathers, evocating images from a past world, always re-lived in the present, thanks to the incredible elegance, lightness and art of a Fred Astaire, for instance…