Gargoyles
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Gargoyles

Price: $14.95
by Frank A. Wallace
for classical guitar and two mandolins, op. 68; INCLUDES PARTS

“As active soloists as well, we instantly appreciated Wallace’s challenging writing, energetic flow and musical depth. Wallace’s writing for mandolin uses the instrument in full-range just like the great virtuosos Calace and Kuwahara did. His knowledge of the guitar, its sonorities and hidden beauties, shows a life of devotion to the instrument and music in general.”

–Annika and Fabian Hinsche [Mare Duo]

Commissioned by: Mare Duo

Written: July, 2012 in Carrión de los Condes, Spain

Duration: 7:00 minutes; 12 pages

Instrumentation: classical guitar and two mandolins

Skill level: advanced

Recording: Mare Duo with Anne Wolf; recorded August 26, 2012; released in May 2014

Preview: a sample PDF of Gargoyles

Please scroll down in the player to hear Gargoyles; this is a collection of most of my music for mandolins.

Gargoyles, for two mandolins and guitar, was written in Carrión de los Condes, Spain in July 2012 for the Mare Duo of Dusseldorf, Germany. Returning to Spain to play music on my own turned out to be a very emotional experience. “Celebrating” the 40th anniversary of my attendance at the Segovia master class in Santiago de Compostela and the 30th of a performance of medieval music for Música en Compostela was not a smooth ride. Sparing the details, I was nevertheless moved once again by the architecture and art of the Romanesque churches as well as the Roman ruins’ spectacular mosaic floors at Villas Romanas Olmeda and Tejada. But the Gothic gargoyles on the cathedral of Palencia stole the show for me and seemed to characterize my mixed emotions of joy and sorrow. So this piece is dedicated to the bizarre in art.

Not having enough of these little fellows, I decided to write More Gargoyles for the Mobius Trio of San Francisco. A gargoyle seems to represent the two sides of humanity – they protect the sacred space within the walls they adorn, frighten us away. They are ugly by design, but beautiful in their intensity and in the sculptor’s execution. In fact it is often the most grotesque that fascinate and inspire. But it is the sacred space we must enter by facing the gargoyles. My grandfather wrote, “Grin at the thing that bothers you and it will laugh with you.” Do we not all have “gargoyles” in our lives, persons that challenge with their grotesque or ugly manners, yet in conquering them we grow. Or are they right there inside, and on occasion jut to the surface and scare our selves, our partners and loved ones. Life is not a smooth ride.

All notes are derived form the the name of both groups (for their respective pieces) and, you guessed it, “gargoyles.” Both a chromatic and a modal version are created and then used and, perhaps. abused throughout the compositions.

Gyre Publications
Copyright ©2012 Frank A. Wallace
Cover photography and design by Nancy Knowles
All rights reserved.