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Nico Muhly

Publisher: Chester Music

So to Speak (2004),
Commissioned by Amiel Melnick, fervent polyglot
St. Rose Music Publishing
Sub Category
Large Orchestra
Year Composed
8 Minutes

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Programme Note
Nico Muhly So to Speak (2004),
So To Speak is an extended meditation on an anthem for Pentecost by Thomas Tallis entitled Loquebantur Variis Linguis (they spoke in many tongues). After organizing the material for the piece, I wrote a melody that works against, underneath, and above Tallis’s lines to create counterpoint made of old and new elements. Patterns of aggressive woodwind scales and ornaments evoke some of the hysteria inherent in glossolalia (ecstatic speaking in tongues). The central section of the piece gestures towards an insect-like musical and religious fervor.
So To Speak is scored for orchestra and lasts seven minutes. It is dedicated to Amiel Melnick.

Nico Muhly

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  • 30 JUL 2015
    New Hampshire Music Festival
    Plymouth, NH
    Donato Cabrera, conductor
  • 03 OCT 2008
    Centre in the Square, Toronto, Canada
    Kitchener Waterloo Symphony Orchestra
    Edwin Outwater, conductor

    Other Dates:
    4,5 October - Centre in the Square, Toronto, Canada

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