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Sunday, October 4, 2015

Musical Interlude

(For politics, please scroll down)

Arvo Pärt's Spiegel im Spiegel (translation = "mirror in the mirror"), herewith dedicated to the victims of the October 1, 2015 massacre at Umpqua Community College:

About Spiegel im Spiegel (essential material for an understanding of the piece and why it is a fitting tribute for what happened on October 1, 2015):
...The piece is in the tintinnabular style of composition, wherein a melodic voice, operating over diatonic scales, and tintinnabular voice, operating within a triad on the tonic, accompany each other.

The piece was originally written for a single piano and violin – though the violin has often been replaced with either a cello or a viola. Versions also exist for double bass, clarinet, horn, flugelhorn, flute, bassoon, trombone, and percussion. The piece is an example of minimal music.

The piece is in F major in 6/4 time, with the piano playing rising crotchet triads and the second instrument playing slow F major scales, alternately rising and falling, of increasing length, which all end on the note A (the mediant of F). The piano's left hand also plays notes, syncopated with the violin (or other instrument).

"Spiegel im Spiegel" in German literally can mean both "mirror in the mirror" as well as "mirrors in the mirror", referring to an infinity mirror, which produces an infinity of images reflected by parallel plane mirrors: the tonic triads are endlessly repeated with small variations as if reflected back and forth. The structure of melody is made by couple of phrases characterized by the alternation between ascending and descending movement with the fulcrum on the note A. This, with also the overturning of the final intervals between adjacent phrases (for example, ascending sixth in the question - descending sixth in the answer), contribute to give the impression of a figure reflecting on a mirror and walking back and towards it....


  1. Beautiful...fittingly.


  2. Replies
    1. Baysider,
      Looking for a bit of serenity in my own life the past few weeks.

    2. Me too - but I'm way out of your league. No papers to grade, for one thing. :)

    3. Baysider,
      Only three more essays to grade now. Woohoo!

  3. Beautiful and calming. Just what is needed. Thanks!

    1. Old NFO,
      There is so much noise and rancor these days, that I thought, "Gotta have some tranquility!"

  4. Replies
    1. Duck,
      That's a beautiful arrangement. Thanks.

  5. Thanks for adding The Last Tradition to your Blog roll. I did likewise


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