Commissioned by L'Auditori de Barcelona and Jove Orquesta Nacional de Cataluña
by Benet Casablancas
“Canti ed Estasi di Lea” for soprano and orchestra (suite from the opera L’enigma di Lea) collects and symphonically elaborates some of the most characteristic expressive materials and environments of the same author's opera L’enigma di Lea, premiered at the Gran Teatre del Liceu on February 9, 2019, and incorporates some of the most relevant interventions of the protagonist, Lea, a role entrusted to a lyrical soprano. Formally, and with a duration of approximately 16 minutes, “Canti ed Estasi di Lea” adopts an arched arrangement and is made up of three major sections: orchestral introduction; entrance, main aria and dance of Lea; and love scene, ballet (orchestral epilogue).
The introduction has the function of preparing the listener by evoking some of the expressive climates of the opera, freely elaborating some of its motifs and musical materials, deploying a rich orchestral fabric, with small sections very contrasted - from the beginning expectant and from wide sounds to moments of great rhythmic vivacity and agitation - and with an important participation of the solo woodwinds. Gradually, the discourse gives way to a more rested and sustained texture to introduce the entrance of Lea, who approaches from her timeless distance, and her aria, which begins with the innocent yet fanciful character of a popular song, it becomes progressively more intense and passionate. It follows an orchestral epilogue based on the ballet music of the third part of the opera, a hypnotic symphonic page of ecstatic and contemplative sign that elliptically and subliminally emphasizes the love scene that finally leaves Lea and Ram in one being to reach fullness.