Paul – Eric Soderqvist : Ice Flower for 2 guitars
Paul – Eric Soderqvist
Bergmann Edition : 10 pages (score only)
Finnish– born Soderqvist has here written an unusual, but very beautiful piece for 2 quite advanced players. The idea behind the title is explained by the picture on the front cover of a snow particle, blown up large to resemble a flower.
Therefore the piece throughout its 7 – 8 minutes is full of very bright tinkly music, often deliberately full of tonal clashes that are however, although very modern do succeed in being almost impressionistic and delicate at the same time, and quite unlike anything you may have come across before.
The piece begins with guitar one playing some large chords, each with a couple of semi tonal crunches, whilst guitar 2 is playing a sequence of harmonics on frets 3, 4, 5, and 7, which in themselves often clash harmonically with guitar 1.This opening sequence is, however quite magical in its sound, and it creates a lovely picture. An Allegretto then enters, with guitar one providing the accompanying arpeggio patterns, all to be allowed to ring through the bar, with guitar 2 playing a 3 , then 4 note rising theme, which after a repeat section gradually winds down into a Lento section where the long chords that both guitarists take turns to play are quietly dissonant .This goes on for quite a length until a final Allegro section adapts the previous Allegro but now both guitars are constantly on the move playing continuous quavers throughout this 6/8 section. Finally the piece slows down into a final Lento coda where the theme is reprised and everything finishes on a very bright, widely spaced chord played pianissimo.
As I said before this music is utterly original but continuously captivating in its musical language. It absolutely suits 2 guitars and it will delight any audience, modern in its language though it is. It is however full of wide, unusual chordal spans and fingerings that you definitely will not be used to trying, so it does require two very decent players to give it the finish it deserves.