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Year of composition: 2011

[after Andrés Valero "El Monte de las Ánimas"]

First Prize in the IV Galician Composition Contest for Wind Orchestras (third category), 2011. Test piece in the IX Galician Bands Contest, 2015. Is dedicated to Andrés Valero Castells.

Length: 13 minutes

Scored for: wind orchestra

Opus 6 - AA062016


i. Prologue: Dies Irae

ii. Outside the church

iii. Road to the cemetery

iv. Wolves from the rye

v. Inside the cemetery

vi. Epilogue: Ritual


First performance was given by Galician Federation of Wind Orchestras, conducted by Xosé Carlos Seráns, at Galicia Concert Hall, Santiago de Compostela, Spain, December 30, 2011.

Please note:

Full set and study scores are purchased, fulfilled in hard copy, and yours to keep. Full sets are licensed per two years of performance, and it can be renewed with an additional cost of 100€. Additional parts are delivered in PDF, and the fixed electronics (when necessary) is free downloaded through a QR code printed on the full score.

For more information or request additional parts, please, contact us through:

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Study score (8.3 x 11.7)


Full set (8.3 x 11.7)


Noite de defuntos

Barro Youth Wind Orchestra
Conducted by Alberto Busto



Brief notes:

This composition won the first prize in the IV Galician Composition Contest for Wind Orchestra 2011, third category, and also was the test piece in the IX Galician Bands Contest 2015, second section. First performance was given by Galician Federation of Wind Orchestras (FGBMP), conducted by Xosé Carlos Seráns at Galicia Concert Hall, Santiago de Compostela (Spain), December 30, 2011. Is dedicated to Andrés Valero Castells.

The gestation of this work comes up from the visit to the cemetery during the traditional "Noite de defuntos" (All Souls’ Day) of 2011. The All Souls’ Day the third day of the Allhallowtide, after All Saints' Day (November 1) and All Hallows' Eve (October 31). In my home always was pretty common the tradition of visit the graves in the night of the All Souls’ Day. Without an apparent reason, the night of that year was especially transformative for me, somewhat sensible – from a purely artistic way, of course – to the point of trigger sonic gestures, even plots, during the journey that goes from my home, in front of the old church, to the gloomy cemetery of my hometown. With this programmatic pretext in mind, the composition is marked out in six miniatures, played without interruption, as detailed below:

I. Prologue: Dies Irae. Lightning strikes outside the church, we can see its light through the stained glass windows. Inside, the medieval Latin poem "Dies irae" (The day of wrath), best known from its use in the Roman Rite Requiem (Mass for the Dead or Funeral Mass) is intoned

II. Outside the church. We left the church. The storm has subsided, but we still can hear the tinkle of raindrops as they fall down the church gutter.

III. Road to the cemetery. We headed towards the cemetery holding a bouquet of flowers in order to complete the solemn ceremony of All Souls' Day, but something bothers us. The atmosphere is charged, dense, as if it were a reverie.

IV. Wolves from the rye. Our trip is suddenly interrupted; we have a bad feeling. We feel watched, somewhat threatened, as if an invisibles eyes could reach us from everywhere. We resumed our march. Faster. In the distance, two terrible wolf howls make our hair stands on end. We move faster and faster. When we think are already safe, a ghostly bloodshot wolf eyes appear suddenly in the middle of the road, but as soon as they appear, disappear. We are in front of the cemetery.


V. Inside the cemetery. Once we entered the cemetery, crossing through the old metal gate that creaked as we passed, we hear the church bells ringing in the distance. It's midnight. The cemetery is full of people who, like us, carry bouquets of flowers, moving leisurely on the gravel while visiting the graves of their loved ones. Suddenly, we think have seen the bloodshot wolf eyes again in the crowd. False alarm.


VI. Epilogue: Ritual. We are in front of the tombstone. We deposit the bouquet of flowers and show respect to the deceased, but as soon as we put down the bouquet, everyone around us begins to sing the "Dies irae", holding lit candles and wearing white, hooded cloaks. We run with all our might towards home, but the chant grows louder and louder, it surrounds us. What used to be people had now become the "Santa Compaña" (The Holy Company), and with a fleeting blow, we immerse into the darkness of our own death. Wake up.

Noite de defuntos is cast in a double variation form with a superimposition of several symphonic forms and concepts, as well as a symbiosis between programmatic and organic music. The first theme is entirely picked up from the medieval Latin poem "Dies irae" (The day of wrath), immediately introduced by both trombone and vibraphone, and developed by augmentation and diminution through a micro imitative counterpoint (glosa-like). The second theme is a paraphrase of the second mode of limited transposition by Messiaen (also known as diminished scale). These two contrasting ideas are atomized throughout the variations, individually or simultaneously, generating a new volatile material. The piece is subtitled "after Andrés Valero El monte de las ánimas", to who this work is affectionately dedicated, since this music has its starting point at the beginning of his astonishing composition, although in aesthetical parameters, Andrés takes a 'Stravinskian' path, whereas I take a more 'Adèsian' approach.

                download it in PDF: Español - English.

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