Louis Andriessen's latest string quartet ...miserere... is connected to the famous Miserere by Allegri in the form: A B A C A B A B. The source for this connection is the German book Melodien by Helmut Krausser. In this book, set in Italy around 1400, the alchemist Castiglio starts a quest for the '26 magic melodies'. These secret melodies have strange powers, for example the power to enamour and to heal. Andriessen has previously used part of this melodic material in Remembering that Sarabande, a piece for four violas written for the 60th birthday of Annette Morreau. ...miserere... is in fact a set of variations.
This programme note may be reproduced free of charge in concert programmes