Finished the 24th sonata today. Thirty-six ones was my initial goal, but I feel that I’ve more or less said what I’m able to say in this form. Without exterior incentive, I might stop here.
The title of the sonata is: where the trail becomes a trace.
Reaching the end of the road is not necessarily a bad thing. The tarmac or the concrete, or even just the graveled path ends and only a vague trace leads into the brushes in front of you. I’ve always felt that it’s exactly there that my real walk starts.
We all know that in a small country like Belgium, civilization is never far away. One can mostly walk a couple of kilometers before bumping into developed countryside. But the sight of a little path, or a mere trace of path winding along always manages to give me the feeling that new beginnings are awaiting.
This sonata is composed for Barbara Baltussen, pianist of the acclaimed piano trio Khaldei. ‘Challenge me’ was her simple answer when I asked her what kind of music she would like to get from me… I happily obliged.
I dedicated this sonata to Olaf Grondelaers of radio Klara, whom I recently met. I think as a broadcaster, he ensures that a new generation of listeners might become captivated by classical music, or, to be more precise, music which is just a bit more challenging. For classical music doesn’t stop some time in the early 20th century. It’s still a living art. We just don’t hear less about it in the media because it’s ‘market potential’ is considered less important. But I never liked to consider the weight or the worth of music (and especially, I don’t like to compare it with gold orstock.
Music is preparing oneself to become dazzled by never ending invention. Music started with the rise of the hominids and it will continue to be produced as long as these same hominids allow the planet to support them.
One cannot shut one’s ears for music. Which means in a way that one cannot shut one’s ears for the big upcoming truths of life.