Topografia, Index 3A

Alexandre Lunsqui (b. 1970) Topografia, Index 3A (2008)

Alexandre Lunsqui was born in Sao Paulo, Brazil to Lithuanian and Italian parents. From a young age he studied the piano, and was moved particularly by the music of Thelonious Monk, especially after learning that all of Monk’s solo playing was improvised. As an undergraduate student with a keen interest in improvisation, he founded the In Sanum Ensemble, a group devoted to improvising and composing works in the styles of Webern, Messiaen, and Berio, among others. After moving to America and becoming a student at the University of Iowa and later at Columbia University, Lunsqui became fascinated with the music of Tristan Murail and other spectralist composers. During his time at Columbia Lunsqui studied with Murail, as well as with Fred Lerdahl, George Lewis, and Jeffrey Milarsky. While there he began to combine his Brazilian background with the new and different sounds and techniques his teachers had been utilizing. After ten years based in New York City, he is now a Professor of Composition and Theory at the Universidade Estadual Paulista, UNESP in São Paulo, Brazil.

Alexandre Lunsqui offers the following note for Topografia, Index 3A:

The main element behind the relatively simple rhythmic materials used in Topografia, Index 3A comes from the idea of mapping and surveying physical features of a region. More specifically, the idea came from my observation of the mountains in the central area of Brazil, called Minas Gerais. The mapping is made possible through the creation of a grid that provides a sensation of continuity and regularity. The multiple directions that the sonic material takes along the piece are somewhat similar to the organization of shapes and colors on a canvas—or the numerous features on a landscape.