Tristan Murail was born in 1947. His biography reveals that he was a student of the famous Olivier Messiaen. But this connection is not the only asset to turn him into the heir of the rich French musical tradition. Fascinated by the pioneering work of sound magician Claude Debussy, Murail developed a new style that we have come to call ‘spectralism’. Not just the instrumental and harmonic colour, but also the overtones of the individual sound are unravelled to achieve an ultimate sound symbiosis.
In the cycle ‘Portulan’ Murail’s affinity with Debussy seems to become even more striking in that Murail translates images, impressions of his own environment into music. Holding in his hand a ‘portulan’, a 13th century primitive nautical chart, the composer takes us to all the cardinal directions. What news does the west wind bring us? What does a ride in a car across the Seven Lakes Drive, New York sound like? What is the smell of the bushes in the Provence? So, a voyage of discovery inside your ears.
It is our honour and pleasure to announce that Tristan Murail himself will be present at our November Music concert in Den Bosch!
After her studies in Paris, the Finnish composer Kaija Saariaho also chose the path of spectralism. Saariaho charted her own course with music moving on the verge between silence and fragility, with sounds like glass splinters and harmonies sounding as if scraped from ice. Her utterly personal and intuitive music language took definite shape in large-scale orchestral works and operas. Her most poetic output, however, is her chamber music. From Saariaho’s rich repertoire, Het Collectief will be making a magnificent anthology for soprano, flute, cello, piano and electronics. An excellent opportunity to discover the work of this ‘grande dame’ of contemporary music.
In the meantime, this concert has unfortunately become an 'in memoriam': Kaija Saariaho died in June at the age of 70.