Bulto San Ysidro (Score & Parts)-FL/EH/BSN
Composer: Davis, Daniel
Publisher: Daniel Davis (composer)
Bulto San Ysidro
for flute, English horn, and bassoon
by Daniel Paul Davis- American composer
The New Mexico bulto is a carved woo sculpture crafted by regional folk artists, featuring the figures of religious personages, angles, and saints that are often painted in bright colors. In Spain and in New Mexico, San Ysidro is the patron saint of farmers. May 15th is his feast day commemorating the day of his death in 1130. San Ysidro was a day laborer who lived from 1070-1130 and was known for his piety toward the poor and his kindness towards animals. He began his days in prayer, then went out to the fields to plow. it was reported that as many as three angels plowed the fields in order to allow him more prayer time. In sculptures and paintings, San Ysidro is often seen with angels plowing the field as Ysidro stands, often with a spade to till the soil, with a bundle of wheat nearby.
The musical composition of Bulto San Ysidro begins in a mood of a prayer. It centers the instruments on the same note with slight fluctuating grace notes above and below the central tone. The composition is in the form of a Rondo (A-B-A-B-C-C-A-B-A) with a development section. Section A is based on a slowed-down rhythmic rendition of the pito melody taken from the musical traditions of the Penitentes of Northern New Mexico. Pito melodies were played on a homemade pipe-like whistle and were used to precede the Alabado, a sung prayer to the Virgin. Section B is a rhythmical contrast with a minimalist character that slightly hints at the pito melody. Section C comprises a faster and more turbulent section. It is interspersed with phrases reminiscent of the opening. The turbulent material is briefly developed before returning to other sections.