Nico Muhly's Stabat Mater Dolorosa for Soprano, Baritone and Ensemble. Full score.
My Stabat Mater is a very simply-constructed piece of music. I knew I wanted to write a duet, a piece of religious music, and something to go along with a bit of Birtwistle. My initial instinct was to base the piece on drones, as Birtwistle's music has so very many notes, but then I decided that an austere but ecstatic approach was the best to fill a coherent evening. I asked my friend Craig Lucas to paraphrase the Stabat Mater text - which describes the Virgin Mary weeping at the foot of the cross on which her son is crucified. The piece is organised by separating each phrase of the text with a moment of silence, with the exception of the last three, which are joined with a frenzied chorale with improvised dynamics from the Harp, Wind and Strings. - Nico Muhly
Instrumentation: Soprano and Baritone voice, Flute, Clarinet in Bb, Harp, Violin, Viola and Violoncello.