Integral/parent work: La vie en prose, une symphonie concrète

Premiere: February 19, 2009, Montréal / Nouvelles Musiques 2009: Concert de musique concrète, Salle Pierre-Mercure — Centre Pierre-Péladeau, Montréal (Québec)

To Jérôme Noetinger

In 2008 I started working on a set of pieces meant to be a part of a larger body of work entitled La vie en prose, une symphonie concrète. The first chapter of this work, L’horrible tissu des jours, was premiered in December 2006, in Paris, at a concert by the GRM. As I write these program notes (in November 2008), I see this work as a paradoxical project that will blend concision and large scale, a rather long project assembled from very short musical phrases. The piece is still very open and will become only a chapter in a kind of concrète symphony that should have a total duration of 90 to 120 minutes. The various pieces are tied by a series of ‘sonic characters,’ one of which being a musical ‘frieze’ created on a prepared piano. I got the idea for ‘prose music’ from a comment Flaubert makes in his correspondence about his search for a new prose that could pick up poetry’s torch.