Nocturne, Opus 9
About this work:
The Nocturne focuses on states of altered consciousness that occur in the realm of night amid
the shadowy beauty and strange disconnected time sense deep within the sub-conscious human world.
The work also pays attention to the physiology of sleep: rapid eye movements; foot and arm shudders;
cries and murmers, etc.
In the first atonal movement, strictly measured tones and harmonics, marked marcato, underscore
the time sense of the lingering wakeful state.
Movement No. 2 begins with hints of African
American jazz chordal systems, marked agitato. The music evokes a dissonant surrealism and
fantasy fragments and is marked con expressione; lastly Lento, assai elegante.
Movement No. 3 ascends into the highest registers of the guitar with chordal complexes having a
harp-like effect. Here the ethereal is signalled by an improvisational passage; the concept adopted
from both Mozart's improvisations and again the African American jazz improvisations. This a
freely musical associative state; the score shows only a chordal outline for this passage marked
quasi sogno. The guitarist must create as well as the composer.
No. 4 begins with an atonal intrusion reminiscent of the first passage. Marked quasi eco: tones on
the E-string are bell-like ending with a single chord system marking the first ray of dawn, and
wakefullness announced by reverberating tones recalling cathedral chimes.
copyright 2003, Judith Cody, all rights reserved
Version: classical guitar
Year composed: 1977
Ensemble type: Solo instrument, non-keyboard:Guitar (Classical/Acoustic)
Instrumentation: 1 Guitar (Classical/Acoustic)
Instrumentation notes: No. 2 marked "quasi sogno" is an improvisational passage: Measures and their note groups are not meant to be played in strict time but delineate structure for the guitarist to improvise upon. Measures must be freely interrelated and used as a framework for the guitarist's powers. Note groups, relative time values are maintained for integrity.