Sanctus Guido Acquensis

September 26th, 2008, Cloister of the Canons, Acqui Terme

Concert inside the Cathedral Cloister in Acqui Terme. Alzek Misheff, Maurizio Barbetti, and Rocco Parisi.

In the cloister of the Cathedral the public was immersed in Gregorian melodies with the sound of millenarian bells along with two pianos, a viola and a bass clarinet.

The musical improvisation is accompanied by images of the territory that evoked the medieval laces of Saint Guy.

The portrait of Saint Guy is painted in front of the public. The movement of the brush activates the keys of the piano, playing along with the musicians. Saint Guy has been the patron saint of Acqui since one thousand years.

As a young man he gets the enrollment at the University of Bologna, in the first course of the first university in the world.

In addition to theology and philosophy, he also studied medicine, agriculture and music: the latter under the guidance of Guido d’Arezzo, the Benedictine monk to whom we owe the musical notation still in use. Back in Acqui, Saint Guy becomes bishop of the diocese, at that time one of the largest in northern Italy. He faces a terrible famine, the consequence of a natural catastrophe of incessant rain for four years. To refuel with new grain, he travels with four caravels from Genoa to Thrace. After his death the pope proclaimed him a saint by popular acclaim.


In a little while

as time goes by

everything is forgotten

the bells, too

because they get worn out

and must be restored

to sound as a choir.

This is in the nature of things

and of people…

Untuning and forgetting –

going out of choir

because an accord is forgotten

This is in the nature of things

from time to time

to reinstate

the intervals…


Acqui Terme, August – September 2008