Acanto is an architectonic ornamentation inspired by the leaves of a plant native to Mediterranean humid climates (acanthus mollis). In Portuguese or Spanish language it may also be written as a canto meaning as in ‘to sing’.
The idea for this piece derives from the manipulation of a simple melodic cell, an ornament that travels through the work appearing in different instruments or combination of instruments, registers, and pitch/rhythmic mutations. Thus, the three movements represent varied textural realizations of the same ornament. Sometimes I use particular features of a movement across movement boundaries, resulting in an organic use of the concept of memory and anticipation. The third and last movement, Adagio molto, is modeled after the third movement of Three Places in New England by Charles Ives. Here, the use of ornamentation is expanded to form a simple lullaby played by the vibraphone while the rest of the orchestra plays transformations, mainly textural, of my original cell.
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