Az-Zuhoor : an elegy for 'oud
by Katia Tiutiunnik (2014)
Also known as: الزهور : an elegy for 'oud
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The Arabic title of this elegy for 'oud, az-Zuhoor, means "the flowers"; the symbolic nature of this title is multidimensional. In the context of this composition, "the flowers" referred to are those placed on the coffins and graves of the deceased, in addition to those which decorate temples and churches during funerals. In this composition, these "flowers" are portrayed by means of musical ornamentation, in the tradition of classical Arab music, as elucidated in Kitāb al-Musīqa al-Kabīr (The Great Book of Music) by Abu Nasr Muhammad al-Farābī.
Among the things which, according to al-Farābī, cause a melody to attain a "more excellent state" are the techniques of ornamentation. The application of these techniques to a melody may result in its "multiplication", "amplification", "intensification" and "embellishment", as well as the replacement and transposition of some of its fundamental notes. Al-Farābī's explication of these techniques in Kitāb al-Musīqa al-Kabīr, which, unlike previous works, systematised theories which reflected actual musical practice, provided a rich source of inspiration for my own compositions, including az-Zuhoor.
Instrumentation: 'Oud solo.
Duration: 5 min.
Dedication note: Dedicated to Nathan Fischer
Commission note: Commissioned by Nathan Fischer.
The composer notes the following styles, subjects, genres etc associated with this work:
Classical Arab Music, Sufism, Improvisation, Ornamentation, Renaissance music
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