Anastasios Mavroudis

Performing Sicilianos: An Analytical and Interpretative Approach to the Sonata for Violin and Piano, Op. 45 by Yorgos Sicilianos

Yorgos Sicilianos (1920–2005), originally a proponent of Greece’s National School Movement, over a period of 30 years experimented with atonal neoclassical styles, the twelve-tone method and integral serialism and sought solutions to problems of form and structure. After 1980 he concluded that the term ‘post-diatonic music’ best described his compositional style, which by then drew inspiration from literary works to give form and meaning to his music.
This paper investigates and analyses the compositional influences, process and technique of Sicilianos’s Sonata for Violin and Piano, Op. 45 (1981), and provides an interpretative approach by giving due consideration to the extent to which the analysis informs a performance of the piece. The analysis reveals critical structural parameters that not only impact the subjective aspects of interpretation, but also determine practical matters of performance, such as the bowings that the performer must execute. The Sonata is the second work in his mature compositional period (1980–2005) and it exemplifies this later style. Its sources of inspiration range from Bach, the poets Yannis Ritsos and George Seferis, to Javanese Pantoum poetry and Gamelan music. Giving consideration to the roles of the author/composer and performer, as defined in post-modern and post-structural theory, and using various analytical approaches, this paper attempts to provide practical guidance towards the preparation and performance of the Sonata for Violin and Piano, Op. 45, to aid future performers in interpreting the work with fidelity to its composer’s vision.