Commissioned and performed by Laura Husbands
Interior Castle was inspired by the book of the same name by 16th century mystic St. Teresa of Avila, a woman who challenged the social structures of her day in her actions and in her writings, displaying a remarkably determined character and a talent for literary beauty. In this particular collection of writings, St. Teresa uses a castle made of a single diamond as a metaphor for the human Soul, which is portrayed, somewhat complexly, as both a space and as a female protagonist traveling through that space. The space inside the castle is vast and rather labyrinthian in its construction, containing multiple “mansions” that represent different levels of human (feminine?) progress and struggle. The outer walls of the castle are infested by reptiles and scorpions, some of which escape through the castle door with the feminine Soul on her journey “through” herself. The Soul eventually crushes the scorpions and makes her way to the innermost rooms of the castle where she finds communion with God. In this work for solo guitar, I hope to portray both the circuitous space of the imagined castle and the struggle of the feminine protagonist who overcomes great obstacles to find her true identity.
– Sarah Perske