Foreshadows of the Cross by Norberto Guinaldo
Number two in a set of Six Contemplations on the Life of Christ entitled "Agnus Dei"; Foreshadows… derived its inspiration from the well-known Biblical passage in the Old Testament's Book of Numbers that depict "The Fiery Serpent," the one of many dramatic moments recounting Israel's forty-year sojourn in the desert after leaving Egypt:
"And the Lord said to Moses: make thee a fiery serpent and set it upon a pole…,
And it came to pass that if a serpent had bitten a man, when he beheld the
Serpent of brass, he lived." (The Book of Numbers, 21:8–9)
Five thematic elements make up these piece:
I. The serpent's theme.
II. God's theme. (Also used in three numbers of "Agnus Dei")
III. Distress, suffering theme.
IV. The serpent of brass/ The Cross of Christ theme. (Also used in other numbers of "Agnus Dei")
V. The Healing/Peace theme.
The First, Third and Fifth are developed. The Second and Fourth just stated.
A word must be said about the compositional technique used in this piece by the composer.
The word (and a "bad one" in certain circles) is Serial; Twelve-tone. Yes, this composer has used "rows" but has used them in his own way. He was never a slave to them but, he "bent them" to be his servants. He used them to get what he wanted. The listener has in the recording of the music proof, that the results are truly pleasant and fresh and offers a rewarding experience of contemporaty music; it conveys drama and pathos without being ugly. The performer could see, in the perusal of the score, that everything fits perfectly under the fingers without having to resort to gymnastics.
This is for the ambitious organist that wants to shine with the performance of stunning and powerful music, full of drama and profound emotional content. Not overly difficult .
Watch and listen to the video below or on DIAPASON TV.
Listen all the pieces of "Agnus Dei" performed by the composer at www.guinaldo publications.com.