lo firgai (The Mask) - Aleksander Nowak

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is a monodrama for soprano and instrumental ensemble to the composer’s own libretto based on Stanislaw Lem’s short story The Mask. The piece was composed in 2020, on commission from the Adam Mickiewicz Institute, on the occasion of Lem’s 100th anniversary. 

The story is told by a mysterious girl–mantis–machine discovering her origin and destiny. It is about free will, power, love, and hate.

The text was machine translated to the lojban language created in the 20th century as an attempt to enable communication between people and machines. 

The ensemble is a reference to Schoenberg’s Pierrot Lunaire, in double symmetrical setting. Apart from the central soprano voice, the instruments used are: flute, clarinet, violin, cello, piano/percussion, saxophone, horn, trumpet, trombone. 

More about the piece and the process of its creation: 

en.aleknowak.com/blog/categories/the-mask.

Aleksander Nowak