Holidays… It defintely seems one has more time to blog 🙂
A couple of weeks ago, the three ladies of Triotique, a trio composed of flute, oboe and piano, asked me to write nice piece for them;
They’re planning to record a first CD and they wanted me on the track list.
The three valiant females reminded me of another trio, a fictional one. A couple of years ago I composed a comic chamber opera for Teatro Real in Madrid. The whole project collapsed because of the bigotry of the general director of this very catholic institute. He wouldn’t allow ‘his’ house making so called ‘publicity’ for divorce, the topic of the brilliant libretto by the great Spanish writer Rosa Montero. Exit ‘Cambio madre por moto’.
In this opera, the three women are the main driving forces. Compared to them, the three males are but a bunch of weak-kneed fellows… The three strong women of Triotique taking care of these until now unheard notes seemed to me a perfect excuse to make a suite.
When I was younger, let’s be honest, when I was much younger, say, a young teenager, I loved to play the overtures of now forgotten operas on the piano. My grandfather, whom I’ve never met, was a pianist in his own brasserie piano quintet in Ostend. Back in the days that this coastal resort still was the place to be during the summers. Apparently he made arrangements of the big operatic successes for his ensemble out of an old, leathered book with all these famous operatic tunes, which arrived on the piano of my parents many years later. I detested playing Bach, but how I loved the sheer stamping noise in the rousing allegros of eg. ‘Zampa‘ by the young Hérold ! Maybe one could say that ‘good taste’ has never been something which has come easily to me :-)) (‘Si j’étais roi’ de Adams, now comes to my mind too …)
I finished the piece, which I called ‘No quiero que os separéis’ (I don’t want you to separate, a plea of the fictional daughter to her divorcing parents) rather quickly: it didn’t take me more than two long days. I discovered that the whole opera is still very much ‘there’ in my brain.
My next project will really be a vocal one. At least if I succeed in finding ways to do it. I made up my mind to compose a rather bizarre song cycle for the exquisite duo Annelies Van Hijfte and Frederik Martens. I think there’s no need for me to add more repertoire for the already well-worn combination soprano-piano. But Frederik is also very fond of electronic dance music, and bought himself a nice OB6, a multi-voiced synthesizer. Both play and sing in Hardscore. So why not use this alternative side of their multi-pronged talent for my next piece? Why not indeed? 🙂