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cristales y susurros
(whispers and crystals)
for septet


flute (piccolo), clarinet in B♭ (doubling bass clarinet in B♭), harp, violin, viola, cello, double bass


9' 30''

Year of composition:


Commissioned by:



Lontano, conducted by Odaline de la Martinez

Purcell Room, London, 21 April 2005

Published by:

Recorded by:

Lontano, conducted by Odaline de la Martinez (fire dressed in black: Silvina Milstein Chamber Works, LORELT, LNT129)

In cristales y susurros, evocative gestures and motives drawn from the vernacular music of Buenos Aires continuously proliferate, echoing the ripples left by a magical night as it is forgotten to later resurface as torn lace, shimmering silk and spilt champagne.


N.B. there is also a version of cristales y susurros for quintet with piano.

… if you listen intently you can discern the same little motifs coming back again and again, turned this way and that. But this isn’t parsimony, it’s the sign of an emotional heat which keeps returning to the same thoughts, like a regretful lover.

Ivan Hewitt, BBC Music Magazine

 The physicality and ardour ... is here in full measure, and a musical portrait emerges of the Argentine capital rather different to the one provided by Piazzolla.


Guy Rickards, Tempo, 2009, Vol. 63, No. 250

Lontano, conducted by Odaline de la Martinez, excerpt

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