Nuevos Misterios, for amplified Baroque violin and harpsichord

2009, 18 minutes

commissioned by Flying Forms, with the support of the Composers Assistance Program of the American Music Center

For me, the phrase Nuevos Misterios calls to my mind all at once the mystery cults of the ancient world, the arcana and violence of the Middle Ages, gothic architecture, the Inquisition, the Templars, Gnosticism, and the plain unknown future.

The piece turns out to be something of a travelogue. The title is Madrileņo and the connective material imitates Japanese insects, while other material is based on the sounds made by a particular elevator.

Mystery and the history of the violin-and-harpsichord genre connect in the technology I employ. Ancient airs and forms are glanced at sidelong, but the instruments are amplified and distorted by guitar-style effects pedals. Baroque sonorities and the din of Modernity, disorientation at the intersection of tradition and technology: This is its own mystery.


Nuevos Misterios was recorded by Flying Forms on their album, New Music for Old Instruments, which is available for purchase at iTunes, Amazon, and CD Baby.

Scores and Equipment

If you are interested in a score and parts for Nuevos Misterios, please contact Nissim. As the piece requires 2 mics, 2 pedal boards, and and amp, if you are interested in performing the piece, this equipment is also available from the composer.


  • Pre-premiere: March 26, 2009 by Flying Forms on the Schubert Club's Courtroom Concert at the Landmark Center, Saint Paul, Minnesota.
  • Premiere: March 29, 2009 by Flying Forms at House of Hope Church, Saint Paul, Minnesota.
  • New York premiere: October 1, 2009 by Flying Forms at (le) poisson rouge, New York City, New York.
  • June 29, 2012: Performed by Flying Forms at the Baroque Room, St. Paul, MN
  • November 15, 2012: Performed as part of Zeitgeist New Music Cabaret by Flying Forms at Studio Z, St. Paul, MN
Contact Nissim Schaul