The Stabat Mater for Soprano, Mezzosoprano and Piano was composed by David Boldrini in about twenty days between February and March, 2016. Dedicated to the soprano Laura Andreini and the mezzosoprano Laura Brioli, the piece is based on a Latin text attributed to Jacopone da Todi, and together with the Mass and the Ave Maria, written in 2014, it is part of the thanksgiving works by the Empoli composer. Stabat Mater consists of eleven pieces and it can be considered, unlike the Mass, a true homage to Romanticism and a free-style composition in which there are continual references to the Classics. It could be said that this composition is the expansion of the creative thinking of other Italian and French authors who have been involved in the past in sacred compositions of various genres, or even in other - some very important - Stabat Mater.
The incipit in the key of E flat minor sounds like an eternal condemnation to which no man can escape and the departure from earthly life. The brief eight bar span of its gloomy melody in which the two voices are interwoven from the beginning, is illuminated by a progression that represents the hope of eternal life and salvation, and the static nature ofthe soprano’s and the mezzosoprano’s melodic lines describes the human pain enclosed in a serene awareness of the faith of the soul’s survival. The weeping and pain are described by the two quover figure anticipated each time by a quaver rest in the second piece. In this passage, panting is inherent in the rhythm derived from the above figuration and this iterative movement constitutes the connective tissue of the Cujus animam.
The static nature and feeling of abandon of O quam tristis, in which the harmonic search that encompasses the least anticipated and predictable meanders of
the known processes and accompanies the very simple melodic line of the soprano, represents the evolution of the Virgin's spirit toward eternity, no more contaminated by rules but projected into a dimension of extraordinary hope animated by the faith in God. Quis est homo represents a psychological return to
the passion of Christ, and the F minor key in which it opens lends to the composition a more terrestrial, complacent but at the same time, heroic tone. This is
only a fleeting moment as it is followed by Pro Peccata, Eia Mater in which the unbelievable pain moves in exaltation and light; a continuous crescendo that flows into the fortissimo finale (Ut sibi complaceam) in which the piano’s virtuosity and the final F major scale sanctify the ultimate victory of eternal life.
After Eja Mater, which, as already mentioned, marks the apex of the Stabat, it seems that everything is catapulted into a new dimension. There are no longer
earthly rules, and the continual alternation of major and minor, dissonant and consonant chords, signify the now achieved peace of mind, resigned to human
pain, tempered by the light of life in a new dimension. The lightness of the melisma on which Santa mater is built and the triplets in the piano part accompanying Iuxta Crucem, describe this concept in a comprehensive way. The ninth piece, Fac ut portem, has a narrative and imitative character and twists on a simple vocal melody that passes from one solo voice to the other in an absolutely imperturbable and aloof way. The return of the incipit theme in Quando Corpus conveys what Jacopone da Todi wrote in his text: that what happens in the Virgin’s pained spirit and in humanity is attributable to a single moment, the desolation of death and terror, the hope and awareness of salvation. The image of the suffering mother is fixed for ever as in Michelangelo's Pietà,
and the Stabat Mater sculpts a moment and a thought; the perception of a state of mind in the form of prayer that remains eternal. This is why it ends in
the same way as it began, because the beginning and the end coincide in a single moment, the moment of death. Earthly life becomes otherworldly, an event that can be summed up in an unicum, pain and hope for the survival of the soul, the beginning and the end; this is also the Christian concept of life: one
returns to where on came from. A brief, glorious Amen, written in the form of a strictly contrapuntal fugue according to the sacred tradition, concludes the Stabat Mater.
The Mass which completes the CD, is a true tribute to wide-ranging sacred nineteenth-century compositions. Recalling Rossini’s style with occasional glimpses of elements of bel canto and there are frequent echoes of Bellini, Donizetti and other references to European vocal music of the first half of the nineteenth century.
Completed in May 2016, the Mass employs the soli within the choir and, as it envisages the use of a piano accompaniment, the work finds its proper dimension in the chamber version for eight voices. The Kyrie opens with an a cappella introduction characterized by a dialogue between soli and choir, accompanied by unpretentious quaver passagework played by the pianist’s left hand which lends rhythmic and harmonic support to the voice counterparts, in turn synthesized by the right hand. The Gloria, introduced by a swirling, rising chromaticscale in the piano part, is striking in its overwhelming forcefulness, and is further underlined by the Choir’s fortissimo, rich in counterpoint, progressions and the imitation of the alternating voices divided into two blocks.
The Et in Terra that follows is composed in the form of a fugue, with the Gloria returning in the final bars with the same force and writing as before, thus
closing the second piece victoriously. Domine Deus, announced by the distant sounds of an approaching fanfare, is, according to tradition, the great aria of the tenor. This first major-key theme is heroic in character and develops its martial intent throughout the A section of the aria with continuous ideas permeated by a victorious melodic and rhythmic exuberance. In the minor key episode B that follows can be found the embryo of what will become the theme of the concluding Agnus Dei. Here the piano, that never acts as a protagonist, develops a Schubert-like accompaniment consisting of on-the-beat crotchets alternating with quaver triplets on the weaker beats. The recapitulation of the Domine Deus is again reiterated by the heraldic sounds of the piano, and the majorkey theme of the tenor returns with a cadenza and a short piano coda that extinguishes the emotional tension that pervades this significant piece of the
Mass. Qui Tollis is a duet between soprano and mezzosoprano containing echoes of Schumann and sometimes even of Liszt. It could be described as a kind of lied where the two voices are interwoven supported by a typical triplet piano accompaniment repeated in the two inner parts with longer notes in the upper and bass parts. The four-part Quoniam has a meditative character, which sometimes reminds us of Brahms and Franck. The piece that follows is a fugue for four
voices, Cum Sanctu Spiritu, that according to tradition, concludes the first part of the Mass. Sanctus, divided into Sancuts, Benedictus and Hosanna a cappella, is made up of a series of chordal blocks in which the voices move in homorhythmically. The opening tension leads to a harmonious crescendo that explodes in the short but intense Hosanna fugue. Benedictus, the Baritone’s aria, is suddenly introduced by two great trills played by the piano, which in turn, announce the arrival of a heroic march of almost Verdi-like singability that inundates this piece of the Mass. It is then dissolved by the sweetness of the choir's singing that, in the end, returns to assuage the souls by proclaiming the Hosanna jubilee that punctually returns to conclude the whole. Agnus Dei is the most intimate and touching moment of the Mass. It is composed in a minor key and encapsulates the concept of remission and the request of God for eternal peace; for this reason, it is conceived with unpretentious passagework and a simple instrumental accompaniment. The path to salvation is represented by the demand
and the constant quest for peace and hope for a celestial signal that will console our lives. Repeating the opening phrase with variations at each statement
is synonymous with the growing awareness of human prayer, and the arrival of the major key that coincides with the entry of the whole vocal assembly
depicts the act of faith in itself. After a brief transitional passage of counterpoint, the musical texture seems to dilate, and the Agnus Dei concludes with the dramatic and repeated demand for the gift of eternal peace with the triumph of the glorious key of C major.
He graduated in piano at the Conservatory Cherubini in Florence in the class of Lidya Rocchetti with full marks, honors and honorable mention.
At the same time he graduated in organ and organ composition at the same conservatory studying in the class of M. Mochi .
He thus began to follow the master classes held by Bruno Canino at the Marziali Academy of Seveso and by the “Trio di Milano” at the music school of Fiesole. He also attended the two-year course held by the piano duo Moreno - Capelli , at the “la Musica Interna” in Bologna. He was an effective student of numerous master classes including those held by P. Badura Sckoda at Villa Medici in Milan, Bruno Canino at the “gli Amici della musica” in Florence and Fabio Bidini in Arezzo .
In 2001 he studied piano with Vincenzo Balzani at the Cantù music school, and then he attended the three-year course at the Imola piano academy " Incontri con il Maestro ", in the chamber music class of Pier Narciso Masi .
He also studied piano for four years at the Sesto Fiorentino music school with Pier Narciso Masi .
Winner of numerous competitions. In 2001 he was awarded the "LIONS" prize as the absolute winner of the “Città di Follonica” piano competition, in 2003 he was awarded as best chamber pianist at the “Luigi Nono competition” in Turin ( Venaria Reale ). In the same year he was first overall at the Rospigliosi competition and second overall at the International Valtidone competition in Piacenza .
In 2004 he was the absolute winner of the “Di Vicopisano” and “Nuovi Orizzonti” piano competitions in Arezzo.
Regularly invited as a soloist and as a chamber musician in prestigious associations, he performed for “L'associazione Fioravanti” of Prato, the “Lycaeum of Florence , the “i Concerti del Cicognini” of Prato, “Associazione musicale lucchese”, “Estate Frentana”, “Festival Barocco internazionale - Orchestra sinfonica” of Sanremo , “I concerti del museo casa Ivan Bruschi” of Arezzo, “Associazione giovani musicisti fiorentini Museo Chiesa di Dante Alighieri”, “Associazione Damaris” of Pistoia, “Teatro del lido” of Ostia, “Agimus Roma”, “Campus internazionale di musica” of Latina, Music Week in Brussels.
Chamber musician requested by internationally renowned artists, he collaborates alongside Maria Luigia Borsi, Andrea Bocelli, Paolo Chiavacci, Brad Repp, Augusto Vismara.
Since 2005 he has been the artistic director of the “Associazione Ramimusicali” of the homonymous concert season and of the competition which has reached its third edition this year.