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Pajaros de Tres Alas

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Efraín Amaya

Efraín Amaya

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Subtitle: Birds of Three Wings

General Info

Year: 1996 / 2002
Duration: c. 7:00
Difficulty: V (see Ratings for explanation)
Original Medium: Orchestra
Publisher: LaFi Publishers
Cost: Score and Parts (print) - $120.00   |   Score Only (print) - $30.00


Full Score
C Piccolo
Bassoon I-II
E-flat Soprano Clarinet
B-flat Soprano Clarinet I-II-III
B-flat Bass Clarinet
E-flat Alto Saxophone I-II
B-flat Tenor Saxophone
E-flat Baritone Saxophone
B-flat Cornet I-II-III
B-flat Trumpet I-II
Horn in F I-II-III-IV
Trombone I-II-III-IV
Bass Trombone
String Bass
Harp (optional)
Percussion I-II-III

(percussion detail desired)


None discovered thus far.

Program Notes

Many times I have been asked how I would describe my music, and I have always found it to be very hard to answer. In essence, I consider my music to have a very personal style, and yet it does show affinities with the music of many Latin American composers. The latter is due not only to the fact that we have grown of the same rich musical traditions, but also to common love for folklore. Venezuelan folklore, my personal case, has many shades. It is the result of three interacting cultures: the Spanish tradition (which was in itself a melting pot), the Black tradition brought by the African slaves, and the aboriginal Indian tradition. The first two of these traditions -- curiously the two foreign cultures -- are also the most explicitly represented in our folklore. Spain, as the colonizing power from which we inherited our language and religion, greatly influenced our folklore by establishing its musical system as the dominant force. Through the Spaniards we knew the harp and the guitar, and adapted those instruments to our local conditions and styles as they began to interact with other traditions. The African culture is present in our folklore not only through a wide variety of percussion instruments and rhythms, but also through its manifold social connotations as music is almost inseparable from dance and ritual.

This fusion has left a very colorful and rich musical language, which one can observe in dances such as the joropo, merenge, samba, cumbia, salsa, and many more that sprung out of it. These rhythms are the backbone of my music. I have been always very attracted to modes. In fact one could say that in my music there is a constant confrontation of dissonance and modality.

Pájaros de Tres Alas is in five distinctive sections, A - B - A'- B'- C. The A section has driving rhythmical ostinato cells that create a tapestry of sound from which a theme is interwoven, dying to a transition leading to the B section. The B section also uses rhythmical figures to create layers of sound, in this case a slow hymn-like melody that germinates through crescendos to a climax and end of the section, when we are presented with a similar material as the beginning in the A' section, but this time, even though the same driven rhythmical ostinato cells are present, they have been transformed and mutated to be much lighter and crispier versions of the same material. This once again winds down leading to B' which uses the same melody as in B but now stripped of any accompaniment and presented as a pure Gregorian-like chant.

The C section bursts out of the quietness into a dance in 3/8 and it is in direct contrast with the other rhythmically binary sections. Although it uses some of the same material as in section A, the material is now molded into a ternary pulse, and some will say into the holistic rhythm of the Trinity.

- Program Note by composer

Commercial Discography


State Ratings

None discovered thus far.


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Works for Winds by This Composer


  • Efraín Amaya website Accessed 27 December 2020
  • The Horizon Leans Forward..., compiled and edited by Erik Kar Jun Leung, GIA Publications, 2021, p. 243-244.
  • Perusal score