Harmonie du Soir »
Duration : 17 minutes
du Soir » for twelve string instruments (220.127.116.11.1) was commissioned
by the Ministry of Culture for the Instrumental Ensemble of Grenoble.
The work premiered in Grenoble at the end of 1977. Stephane Cardon was
The title, borrowed from Baudelaire, points out that this work speaks
to the listenerssensitivity.
The music, which is neither descriptive or imitative, aims at creating
a special quality of silence.
The sounds in the evening reverberate differently, so that subtil motives
seem more present and capture attention.
The tone colours and the contrasts (even tiny ones) play an important
part, with a bias against instrumental effects, and towards refinement
in a general climate of serenity.
This piece, the shape of which is free, offers a complex texture of several
strata intermingling with each other. Several recurrent motives which
seem to appear at random, punctuate the flow, like sounds in the country
side or in the woods, cutting across each other.
In its depths, the piece complies with a breathing rhythm.
Perceived as a whole, the tension slowly rises towards a climax, developping
an ascending curve (raising), broken by a kind of collapse (lowering).
Looking at the detail, the sounds are organized around two complementary
movements, arsis and thesis.
All along the work, silence is part of composition.
In this unitary vision, « Harmonie du Soir » nevertherless
divides into two parts : the first one unfolds around C# 5 which acts
as a pivot ; then the pivot is displaced to Bb 5.
Right in the centre, the intimacy of a melody, confided to the viola,
lies on a not tempered scale
This phrase, made iridescent by the tone colours around, in a restrained
emotion imitates the modulations of a human voice, as if to deliver a