Sergio Barroso

  • Year of composition: 1988
  • Duration: 12:21
  • Instrumentation: keyboard-controlled synthesizers and stereo fixed medium
  • ISWC: T0703521485


The title refers to the early Renaissance instrumental compositions bearing this generic term to define simply ‘an instrumental composition.’ The piece keeps specific contact with its sixteenth-century ancestors through an extremely dense and ornate polyphonic style, an open continuous structure, certain expressive moods and twists, and the smiling recreation of sound colours and compositional resources of that musical epoch such as echo and pian e forte effects. Except for the use of wholetone and harmonic series tuning systems, the piece is fully microtonal in order to achieve the resulting timbres and textures. The microtunings, ranging from quarter-tone to thirty-second of a tone, are combined in either complex single colour or multi-timbral blocks.

Canzona was realized with a Yamaha DX-7II/E! keyboard synthesizer and a TX-802 synthesizer at Ireme studio in Vancouver (British Columbia, Canada) in late 1988 and premiered shortly after in a recital of new music for digital keyboard I performed at the Vancouver Art Gallery. Canzona was first released on the compact disc New Music for Digital Keyboard, on the SNE label (SNE 556) in 1989.



  • November 3, 1988, Sergio Barroso, keyboard • New Music for Digital Keyboard, Vancouver Art Gallery, Vancouver (British Columbia, Canada)