composer, pianist, music theorist


Grammatica (1993-1995)

a book of 14 piano pieces divided in four episodes.

0. Fuga Iniziale
Episodio Primo 1.1. Allegro e Fuga
1.2. Invocazione e Fuga
Episodio Secondo 2.1. Moto Perpetuo e Fuga
2.2. Elegia e Fuga
Episodio Terzo 3.1. Novelletta e Fuga
3.2. Variazioni e Fuga
Episodio Quarto 4. Ballata

This is a collection of 14 etudes for piano, which is based on the ubiquitous concept of a book of preludes and fugues, written within a neoclassical sound-world. These etudes deal nonetheless more with compositional problems than with piano-playing mechanical ones, and somewhat record the history and evolution of my musical tastes, interests, and of my own development as a composer and pianist during the time of their composition, between the years of 1993 and 1996. Hence the name “Grammar” for the collection: in a certain way, this was my notebook of musical grammar exercises.

The design of the cycle started with the idea of writing a book with seven preludes and fugues, each one working rather loosely with the archetypical basic characteristics of one the seven western traditional modes: Locrian, Aeolian, Phrygian, Ionian, Mixolydian, Dorian, and Lydian, here listed in the order they are introduced in the cycle. Each prelude received a characteristic name, and the fourteen pieces were divided into four episodes which roughly correspond to four development stages of my own music writing and preoccupations at the time. Oddly, the last prelude-and-fugue couple was split up and the fugue was positioned as the introduction to the whole cycle. Its prelude, named “Ballade”, was left alone as the cycle's grand finale, for I felt that nothing else could possibly follow its dramatic final closing gesture.

In 2015 I prepared with the utmost care a definitive edition for this collection, as its twenty years jubilee approached. This edition consolidates and settles all the numerous revisions and rewrites that were subsequently made to these pieces for almost two decades since 1996. For this edition, the text of every single one of these pieces was thoroughly and carefully revised and re-typeset.

The Ballade, the Fourth Episode of Grammatica, received the first prize in the Projeto Nascente V, classical music category, in 1995 (São Paulo-SP, Brazil). The Episodio Primo (Studio e Fuga e Intermezzo e Fuga) was awarded the second place in the “X Concurso Nacional Ritmo e Som” of UNESP (Universidade Estadual Paulista, São Paulo-SP, Brazil), in 1994.


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