Recitative to an Absent Sky

for 'cello
By Gregory Mertl
American

Recitative to an Absent Sky (1999) is a dramatic monologue for solo cello, impassioned and emotionally fluid like its often highly charged operatic counterpart. Beginning in a state of restless agitation, the piece gains increasing lyricism, and subsides into a desolate quiet. Yet it explores many different emotional territories along the way. A substantial challenge to the cellist, he must articulate the work’s dramatic shape while executing passages of formidable virtuosity. Recitative to an Absent Sky was written for and is dedicated with affection to Florent Renard-Payen.

Other works by Gregory Mertl:
“A gentleman brought music to his lady's window, who hated him,...and when he persisted, she threw stones at him. Whereupon a friend of his that was within his company, said to him; "What greater honour can you have to your music, than that stones come about you, as they did to Orpheus."”
--Francis Bacon