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© 2019 by Soomin Kim

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Lines of Lerici is the first movement of my first string quartet in progress. Lerici is the name of a town in which I had accidentally ended up when I visited Italy in 2016. My original plan was to go to Cinque Terre – famous tourist spot in Italy – but the staffs at the hotel in Cinque Terre emailed me two days before my reservation that they had to cancel my reservation because of some issue in the room. Therefore, I found a place near Cinque Terre, Lerici, which was about 40-minute ferry ride away from Cinque Terre.

 

However, Lerici was incredibly beautiful – it's old castle, colorful houses and breathtaking beach – and I ended up staying there for the entire time and never even visited Cinque Terre. As it turns out, Lerici was famously known as "Golfo dei Poeti," or Golf of Poets, because it was favorite of writers such as Shelley, Byron, Petrarca and Montale. "Of course," I thought, because the sunset that I saw up on the old castle was the best sunset that I have ever seen. The bright orange sun was bathing the deep-blue sea, egg white boats and pink, peach and yellow houses with its warmth.

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The idea for this string quartet came from the time I spent in Lerici and therefore the piece has a certain lightness to it while being energetic and dense at times. It's subtitle, "...scattered o'er the twinkling bay," is a line from a poem titled "Lines Written in Lerici" by Percy Bysshe Shelley. Following movements will have subtitles from various poems about Lerici as well.

 

Lines of Lerici was written for 2018 soundSCAPE Festival and premiered in July 2018 in Cesena, Italy.