saxophone quartet, accordion, shawm, voice and processing

Premiere: March 4, 2023, Quasar; Mixtura; Sergej Tchirkov, accordion; Kai Wessel, Dániel Péter Biró, Arthur Pierre Antoine Hureau-Parreira, electronics; Guillaume BarretteMontréal / Nouvelles Musiques 2023: Dialogues intercontinentaux, Agora Hydro-Québec — Cœur des sciences — UQAM, Montréal (Québec)

The melodic material of Migdalim Bavel is based on four songs: a recitation of the Koran (Surah al Qadr), a trope from the Jewish Torah (Genesis 1: 1-2), a Hungarian lament (from the Somogy region) and a plain-chant from St. Gallen (Codex Einsiedeln 246). Each saxophone transforms the melodic fragments of a given song; sometimes the saxes intertwine, sometimes they play in counterpoint, and they always breathe together. As the piece progresses, certain phonetic elements of the songs gradually reveal their melodic shadows, until translations of the Hebraic text of Genesis 11: 1 are heard: “… and the whole earth had one. language and the same words.”