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Sonata núm. 1 per a viola i piano


Soler, Josep Author:
Soler, Josep

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Two themes inspired by Verdi serve to create different variations and juxtapositions, which never appear in the same way.

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Edition: Printed

    Period 20th Century
    Subheading / Parts On a theme by Giuseppe Verdi
    Instruments Viola, piano
    Pages 40
    Time 25 min
    Contents Score and part
    ISMN 979-0-3502-0472-2
    Price of print edition 16,64€
    Edition Printed

    Josep Soler has composed different works dedicated to the viola, amongst which feature two sonatas, some variations and two solo works. Sonata núm. 1 per a viola i piano (Sonata no. 1 for viola and piano) was written between 1993 and 1994 and its subtitle is on a theme by Verdi. In fact, Soler allowed himself to be influenced by the themes of Verdi’s Requiem which lends unity to this work that lasts nearly half an hour. According to the composer, “Verdi is a musician whom I hold in high regard. Not only because he was a great composer but because it also seems that he was a wonderful person». Soler’s passion for opera is well known (his catalogue includes a dozen titles for this genre), but this time we will present a work that is a far cry from the lyrical world.

    The two Verdi-inspired themes serve to create different variations and juxtapositions and they never appear in the same way. As Soler says, “repetition in itself is the work of a copyist, not a composer”. The composer actually lets himself be seduced by these themes, but he does not copy them literally, he rather plays with their transformation. The other important element of the work is the systematic use of the Tristan chord as the base of the harmonic language, which defines Soler’s work during the past twentyfive years. The twelve-tone elements that Soler uses are based on twelve positions of this chord that appear throughout the piece. The composition is dense, contrapuntal and complex and results in a very expressive work with a somewhat intimist nature.

    In spite of being presented in just one movement, the work is structured in six sections so that the odd sections are a prelude to the even sections, which are more significant.

    Sonata núm. 1 per a viola i piano (Sonata no. 1 for viola and piano) was first officially performed by Pablo García Torrelles (viola) and Pascual Jover (piano) on 28 October 2004 in the Club Diario Levante in Valencia. Previously, it was recorded onto CD by Paul Cortese and Michel Wagemans in 1998.


    For an exhaustive analysis of the work, see the doctoral dissertation by Pablo García Torrelles at:


    David Puertas

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