(1990) is a free composition and yet the melodic writing is imbued with the spirit of Latvian folk music. Plakidis begins with the pulse of a single repeated note set against rising arpeggiated figures painting the words ‘All that is good flies heavenwards’. The lower voices enter in the manner of a chorale over which the sopranos continue their ethereal interplay. The haunting characteristic of this piece comes from the tonality of the soprano lines: F major with D flat and E flat. This mode allows the harmony of the lower voices to shift repeatedly between the darkness of B flat minor to a very satisfying F major. The poet Bronislava Martuzveva was a true Latvian patriot—having been active in the Resistance movement she spent some time imprisoned in Siberia. Plakidis’ music is an ideal match to this heartfelt poetry as is particularly apparent in the final lines (‘Soil of the homeland hums and cracks’). The English version of the text is by Lilija Zobens.
from notes by Rupert Gough © 2013