Skip to page content

About this Piece

Amaru refers to the world serpent in Andean cosmology—rainbow-colored, two-headed, and dwelling beneath the earth. Associated with the emergence of underground water sources and transitions between worlds, amaru is also related to the dark constellation serpent Mach’acuay, whose seasonal appearance coincides with the warm rain season in the Andes and the appearance of terrestrial snakes.

Amaru (2022) joins a group of recent works that engage Andean and Irish cosmologies, my ancestry. With the distinct opportunity to write for the end of a program and next to a previous work, Talam (land), I wanted to explore a somewhat risky process: that of detuning an orchestra of strings. As Talam explores the topographies of Ireland through focused soundscapes, I wanted amaru to explore the loosening and tightening of ensemble, strings, conductor, and soloist through rich harmonies, wild harmonic gestures, and emergent cyclic forms. —inti figgis-vizueta