for counter-tenor, archlute and instrumental ensemble (fl-g(bfl).cl/hn.tbn/perc/pf(cel)/vc.db)
This piece opens a series of works inspired by the 35 English poems by Fernando Pessoa.
On the occasion of the composition of the Sonnet XXII, I surrounded myself with different references. Ockeghem's music kept me interested by its "complex" and irresistible acoustic framework deriving from a light breath. He avoids all imitation. The voices follow each other and yet every single one has something very different to tell…" (Paul Hillier).
It seemed to me as if a verse from Charles Baudelaire's poem Correspondances: "Like those deep echoes that meet from afar, In a dark and profound harmony" could approach the universe of the Flemish master and would be able to build a link between the musical and the historic time.
This idea of distant correspondences is also present in a painting from the series "To the Sea" by the artist Cy Twombly, where mysterious, faint writings build a maritime horizon. Thus one comes back to Pessoa and the Sonnet XXII, comparing the poet's soul to "some Egyptian art than Egypt older, Found in some tomb whose rite no guess can scan".
The archlute, an instrument predominantly used in the repertoire of the 16th and 17th century, offers a paradox novelty effect since the techniques of its use in contemporary play have hardly been explored. Its choice allowed me to opens some poetic resonances of the times so present in Pessoa's work. It is certainly due to the enthusiasm and the talent of the lute player Matthias Spaeter that this idea could be realised. I experience my work as two universes with multiple arborisations: the universe of the ensemble consisting of three instrumental groups in confrontation with the solitude of the past (archlute and counter tenor). Or to put it in different words, the "contemporary sound" facing the sediments of history which came down to us.
The mutual premiere together with a new work by Eric Gaudibert, also based on a text by Pessoa, made me keep in mind the marvellous quality of his sound, that of a conscience on the border of dream, all so present in his music which I admire so deeply.
Duration: 17' 00"