for bass clarinet, electric guitar, violin, and double bass
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Fortna, commissioned in 2023 by the Prague Quiet Music Collective, is scored for a quartet of bass clarinet, electric guitar, violin, and double bass. The 21-minute work features successive iterations of a single twelve-tone row mapped onto a rhythmic structure that comprises three strands of evenly-spaced pulses, each unfolding at a slightly different metrical speed. The resulting interaction of harmony and duration produces a sonic environment that might be perceived by listeners as a kaleidoscope of recurrent, but never quite identical, musical circumstances. Fortna (“the gate”) is the modern-day name of the Hradčany Monastery, located in the heart of historical Prague. Built in the early 1600s, the monastery served for centuries as a home for nuns of the Discalced Carmelites order. In 2020, when the sisters moved away from the city center, brothers of the Discalced Carmelites opened Fortna to the public as a location for spiritual, educational, and cultural events. One such event is the Prague Quiet Music Festival, for which this work was composed.