Labantina : for retuned classical guitar
by Marian Budos (1997)
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Library shelf no. 787.87/BUD 7 [Available for loan]
'Labantina' was written in July 1997 for my friend, guitarist Ján
Labant, more or less as a musical joke. The main title and the
headings of the three movements make references to Ján's surname.
The three different expression marks used: 'labace', 'labanuto'
and 'labacioso' refer to the standard markings: vivace, sostenuto
and giocoso consecutively.
Ján did not perform this piece as planned in 1997. In 2010, he told me that he would like to perform 'Labantina' at his festival Cithara Aediculae in Nitra, Slovakia, and asked if I could have a look at the piece again and perhaps write it into Sibelius notation software from the original hand-written score and see, if any changes might be need. I played through the whole piece and wrote it down into 'Sibelius' and besides a few little "typos", I was still quite happy with the composition and even excited about a few passages in the music that I had almost completely forgotten about.
It is hard to remember exactly, what I was thinking and feeling thirteen years ago when I wrote this piece. But I can remember that this was meant to be a "light" humorous piece rather than a 'heavy' one. I wrote it only shortly after finishing a concerto for guitar and orchestra for Ján, so I though it would be nice to just 'relax' with something smaller for a solo instrument.
I purposefully modulated quite unexpectedly in passages where I would normally keep going in the same key. The tempi in the first and third movements are quit fast, but it can be played at a slower speed, should anyone prefer (I have already 'slowed down" the tempo marking slightly from the original score). As many musicians at that age, I tended to show off through the speed and difficulty of some fingerings. I especially tried to somehow simplify the awful left hand stretch in the first beat of the second bar in the second movement, but I could not find any suitable substitute. Nevertheless, it is still playable, provided the player's fingers are at least as long as mine. There are a few other little "beauties" throughout the piece, but I will let the player discover these themselves.
Instrumentation: Classical guitar solo (for retuned guitar).
Duration: 7 min.
Commission note: Commissioned by Ján Labant.
First performance: by Ján Labant — 22 Oct 10. Cithara Aediculae international guitar festival, Nitra, Slovakia
The composer notes the following styles, genres, influences, etc associated with this work:
contemporary classical in 3 movements - tonal with interesting modulations and upbeat rhythms (middle movement - slow).
The composer notes:
Written for a professional player, but this piece is also perfect for advanced students who want to improve especially their right hand technique (broken arpeggios with alternative fingering, controlling dynamics of the right hand due to retuned strings and achieving faster speeds).
Performances of this work
22 Oct 10: Cithara Aediculae international guitar festival, Nitra, Slovakia. Featuring Ján Labant.
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