After the first performance of  v.i.r.u.s, at the International Guitar Festival Rust 2001, José Luis Ruiz del Puerto asked me per phone for a composition for solo guitar. A phone call from Valencia, and Gabriel Guillén became our interpreter, because José Luis doesn’t speak a word of German or English. As far as I understood, the composition was to debut during a concert in early 2002. A concert on the occasion of the 150th brithday of Francisco Tárrega. The only limitation imposed on me was that the piece could not exceed 15 minutes. I could not fulfill this. Poor Luis - the final length of the piece is about 28 minutes.

Tárrega is well known in the world of classical guitar (see “Francisco Tárrega Biography”) and friends of classical guitar music know his famous pieces Recuerdos de la Alhambra, Danza mora, Capricco arabe, his Preludes and so on…

Francisco Tárrega
biography of Tárrega


Starting the design of the piece, it was completely clear to me what I had to do. When I was 15 years old, I started my first guitar lessons with Una Lagrima of  Francisco Tárrega. And I have played it very often since, and I still play it today.

I decided to design a tune based on Una Lagrima, adapting many techniques used by the famous classical guitar composer Fernando Sor  in his so called Mozart Variations op. 9. The movements of the piece do not consist of  variations (like in classical music!). A special musical morphing technique was used to generate 12 morphs from Una Lagrima. 

The composition starts with a free introduction, a mutation of the first two bars of Una Lagrima. The twelve morphs of  g.i.l.m.a.r.a.n.u.a were designed using the help of NTONYX StyleMorpher®, a great program, developed under the direction of Alexei Ustinov. (see the article "Using NTONYX StyleMorpher in professional composition work").

The notation work of the whole composition was done using ENCORE, the final tuning  and polishing with Cakewalk Sonar®. The performance and hard disk recording was done with Nemesys GigaStudio 160® in the v4m studio.


g.i.l.m.a.r.a.n.u.a is a palindrom, something like a puzzle, the title of the piece was constructed using all the characters of unalagrima. The title of the morphs are also anagrams of lagrima. This play around with characters should demonstrate part of the morphing techniques used in constructing the whole composition.

g.i.l.m.a.r.a.n.u.a is really not easy to perform, but some morphs are like a lovely breeze. Discover and…




Jovan Pesec

Wien, 25th August 2001   


Using NTONYX StylMorpher® in professional composition work

1. Overview

NTONYX StyleMorpher 2.4 (SM2.4) - is an easy to use and powerful MIDI tool, focused towards composers, arrangers and music fans. SM2.4 is intended to create many different types of transformations of MIDI-songs or fragments of songs. Thus, SM2.4 creates rhythm, meter, harmonic and other translations of your original MIDI source material.

The principal of SM2.4's work is applying an algorithm to the initial song or song fragment. The rules of this algorithm create a translation of the original work. SM2.4 has 6 types of transformations determined by the algorithm used. These algorithms are sensitive to the musical content of the selected MIDI file hence using the same transformation on different MIDI files will provide different results. This program allows you to create a new song using the transformations. The final resulting songs depends both upon the original source MIDI file and the type of transformation selected. Thus, SM2.4 applies special algorithms to a MIDI song and creates a harmonically, rhythm, meter, etc. altered song.


2. Prepering the original tune for the use with NTONYX StyleMorpher®

Fig.2.1: MIDI-recording of the original piece "Una Lagrima" of Francisco Tárrega, done by Jovan Pesec.
(MP3 of  the first 9 bars)

As described in the overview, NTONYX StyleMorpher works withs MIDI-files.
The base of the composition "g.i.l.m.a.r.a.n.u.a" is a lovely tune of F. Tárrega, which really every student knows, who starts playing of the classical guitar. I played it very often in the past on my guitar, but for this purpose I had to play it on the keyboard, attached with a MIDI interface to the soundcard. As recording device I used the notation program ENCORE.
The tune uses two voices. So I recorded one voice after the other and polished the result with ENCORE.
Normally it much better to use two or three tracks in a sequencer program, if you play back guitar music. Because fine tuning of the voices is much easier. Most of the notation programs allow merging of voices for a printable sheet, which guitar musicians are used to.
After finishing recording and polishing the tune, I had to export it using the MIDI format.


3. Generating of the morphs with NTONYX StyleMorpher®

Fig.3.1: NTONYX Stylemorpher®: Third set of parameters of the third morphing (ligamar

I generated more than 60 morphs using NTONYX StyleMoprher and choosed the best of it for the design process with the notation program ENCORE. In the case of ligamar three steps with different settings of music figure, meter, rhythm, harmony, voices and RDN influences were applied after the other.
The whole process is very time consuming, because I got very often results, which were not usable (or hearable) for my purpose.
A note: My expieriences with music generation programs is, they can't compose music, they can extend you possibilities of composing music extremely, if you use these programs like a painter uses the pencil. But not more.


Fig.3.2: Score of the third morphing (ligamar), generated by NTONYX StyleMorpher®
(MP3 of  the first 9 bars)

See the result of music generation in fig. 3.2. Listen to the result. Fig. 3.2 shows the resulting MIDI-file imported into ENCORE, ready  for starting the notation work

4. Designig a piece for guitar from the morph with ENCORE®

Fig.4.1: Score of the third morphing (ligamar),  designed with the notation program ENCORE® by Jovan Pesec
(MP3 of  the first 9 bars)

If you compose music with a music generation program like NTONYX StyleMorpher, Tangent or SSEYO KoanPro, the result normally is not playable for a human musician! Especially not using an instrument like the classical guitar. First, the classical guitar use a combined staff for the voices of the piece. The generator supplies one staff or a grand staff. Another limit is given of possible fingering of the guitar artist. 
Translating of a piece like ligamar (fig. 3.2), generated with NTONYX Stylmorpher, to ligamar (fig. 4.1) with ENCORE needs an expierienced composer.
I know classical guitar very well, because I'm playing classical guitar. The importing of the generated morph into the notation program is the first, and easiest step. But than starts a process using the computer and the guitar alternately, combining the voices, changing the pitches, loosing and adding some notes on the way, adding expressions - making the whole piece playable for a human artist.

But in the case of g.i.l.m.a.r.a.n.u.a the whole process was the work worth.
Hear the result in the short demonstration here or go to Barcelona conservatory next year on the 150. birthday of Francisco Tárrega on 21st of November 2002 and listen to José Ruiz del Puerto. He will play the whole composition there.

But in between have a look at vision4media or NTONYX and


Jovan Pesec

Wien, 22th September 2001   


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updated: 21. Mai 2004
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