Nick Fletcher:Macedonian Sundance
Updated: Apr 17, 2021
Les Productions D’Oz: 7 pages
Nick Fletcher’s guitar works are many and varied and always worth playing a hearing, and this latest work is certainly no exception.
This latest work is in two sections that link seamlessly and begins with a moving Largo set mainly in 4/4 but with occasional elements of 7/8 and 5/4 and is in Am in two and sometimes three voices. The music is always lovely, but not often too easy, as it moves around from the open position right up to 12th fret and beyond a few times, and so knowledge of the complete fingerboard is a must, with this piece. The Largo is quite extensive and must not be hurried, to create the optimum effect.
Then after a brief moment of artificial harmonics, a Presto Vivace takes over, and now the time signatures vary much more with 7/8, 5/8, 3/8, 2/4, 4/4 and 11/8 all being used. The difficulty factor multiplies at this point as the melody flies around the guitar in very fast quavers, with no letup whatsoever. One criticism is that there is an unfortunate misprint, as at bar 103 you are instructed to return via a D.S. al Coda, which is fine, but the actual place where you go to the coda is unfortunately not there, so you have to guess at which point that happens. The coda is relentless in its climactic nature and so one expects a slam – bang finish, but no. After the fortissimo chords one finds two bars of mysterious harmonies topped by artificial harmonics, and the work ends in a question mark.
This is a top class work from a great player/guitarist, and the one misprint notwithstanding, this work will be gratefully received by any advanced player, and his/her audience.