Official web site of Javier Torres Maldonado

excerpts of articles about tiento

About Tiento.

Excerpt of the text wrote by Candida Felici, published on the CD booklet Exabrupto
(Stradivarius, STR 33719).


“When I’ve finished a composition, although I might feel satisfied with the result, I don’t always consider that its creative process is completely exhausted once the score has been written out. So sometimes I feel like having some more fun by going through it again to see if I can find any more potential for expression.” Thus Torres Maldonado on his attitude to his work and what he does with it.

Tiento (2003) for cello and (optional) electronics grew out of an expansion of the music and techniques from the interlude Fantasía que tañeba el ángel, which is actually the fifth movement of another work by Torres Maldonado entitled Luz and also heard on the present recording.

The inspiration behind the sound of Tiento is that of the lute, vihuela and guitar, just as the nature of this piece is inspired by the meaning of this Spanish term, i.e. a sort of free improvisation in vogue during the Renaissance and more widely known by the Italian name ricercare. And so Torres Maldonado’s composition sounds much like an improvisation with its exploration of virtuoso pizzicato techniques. The result however is a wholly new slant on the polyphony, tone colour and percussive effects which the cello is capable of producing. The electronics process these ideas and develop them into echoes, anticipations and dialogues with the real instrument itself.


Excerpt of the article A voyage through musical space, by Gabriele Bonomo, article published in the ESZ News magazine, Edizioni Suvini Zerboni - Milano.

The new version of Tiento closely investigates the relation between cello and electronics.

Last April 30, at the Padiglione d’Arte Contemporanea in Milan, Teresa Felici, cello, and the composer (electronic controls) gave the premiere of a new version for cello and electronics of Tiento, a piece originally written for solo cello. The composer gives the following description of this new version: “The new version of Tiento is part of a project I began in 2000, that introduces the interaction with electronic means into my output for traditional instruments. Another piece from this project is Figuralmusik II, a piece originally conceived for 10 instruments, to which I added an electronic part four years after writing it, thereby changing it into Figuralmusik II/a. However far this work may be from the electronic part of Tiento, I can say that the function of the electronics in both cases is substantially the same. Naturally this is no coincidence but part of a precise project aiming at widening the musical space, exploring systematically every dimension of the musical objects that are subject to this treatment. From this point of view, we may list some of the functions of the electronic part (always in relation to the musical objects it elaborates): expansion, reconstruction and or artificial transformation of the resonance, dialogue, anticipation, memory, spatialisation or reshaping of the musical objects”.

Tiento, page 12 of the score.

See the discography of this piece.

Listen to an excerpt in mp3.

TIENTO (2004), violoncello and (optional) electronic sounds -CD- version ( 7’ ca.)
Milan, Padiglione d’Arte Contemporanea, 30.4.2004 - vc. Teresa Felici.
Score published by the Edizioni Suvini Zerboni - Milano.