Author Topic: Edgard Varèse's Lost Works  (Read 2045 times)

0 Members and 1 Guest are viewing this topic.

Thatfabulousalien

  • Guest
Edgard Varèse's Lost Works
« on: November 03, 2016, 08:09:51 PM »
So as the modernist alien I am, I love Varese's work dearly.
One of the things that does trouble me is how most of his output was lost.
His output contained a symphony, operas, symphonic poems, Nocturnes, Rhapsodies and many more orchestral and chamber pieces.

Because of his high level of early 20th century innovation, it bugs me even more that I can hear these lost works  :(

Offline EddieRUKiddingVarese

  • Full Member
  • *
  • Posts: 434
  • "Everyone is born with genius, but most people onl
  • Location: Father of Electronic muse
Re: Edgard Varèse's Lost Works
« Reply #1 on: November 03, 2016, 08:44:40 PM »
Yep, is one of the enduring legacies of Varese's works the lost piece's  :(

and there are many and then there are the incomplete works too


The lost piece's

Martin Pas, opera,  boys' voices and mandolin (c1895)
Chansons avec orchestra (c1905)
Colloque au bord d'une fontaine (c1905)
Dans le parc (c1905)
Le fils des étoiles, opera (c1905)
Poèmes des brumes (c1905)
3 Pieces, orchestra (Souvenir?) (c1905)
Chanson des jeunes hommes, orchestra (c1905)
Prélude à la fin d'un jour, after L. Deubel, orchestra (c1905)
2 rhythmic prose pieces (Deubel) (c1905)
Rhapsodie romane, orchestra (1905-6; pf version, fp. Paris, 1906)
Apothéose de l'océan, sym. poem, large orchestra (1906)
La délire de Clytemnestre, tradegie symphonique (1907)
Bourgogne, large orchestra (1907-08) - score destroyed by Varese, c1962
Gargantua, sym. poem, large orchestra (1909) - incomplete
Mehr Licht, orchestra (1911; preworked as Les cycles du nord, orchestra, 1912)
Les cycles du nord, orchestra (1912) [see Mehr Licht]
Oedipus und die Sphinx, opera (1908-14)
Danse du robinet froid (1917-19)
"Everyone is born with genius, but most people only keep it a few minutes"
 and I need the knits, the double knits!

Offline Mirror Image

  • Veteran member
  • *
  • Posts: 47256
  • Claude Debussy (1862 - 1918)
  • Location: Northeast GA, US
  • Currently Listening to:
    ...Mist floating above the water...
Re: Edgard Varèse's Lost Works
« Reply #2 on: November 03, 2016, 08:45:32 PM »
Why is this thread in the poll section of the forum?
“Works of art make rules; rules do not make works of art.” - Claude Debussy

Offline EddieRUKiddingVarese

  • Full Member
  • *
  • Posts: 434
  • "Everyone is born with genius, but most people onl
  • Location: Father of Electronic muse
Re: Edgard Varèse's Lost Works
« Reply #3 on: November 03, 2016, 08:51:19 PM »
Lets nominate our favorite missing piece then

Mine would be Bourgogne
"Everyone is born with genius, but most people only keep it a few minutes"
 and I need the knits, the double knits!

Offline GioCar

  • Full Member
  • *
  • Posts: 935
  • Location: Milan
Re: Edgard Varèse's Lost Works
« Reply #4 on: November 03, 2016, 08:54:41 PM »
Lost or...destroyed by the composer?
I had always thought that Varèse had consciously decided to let those works fall into oblivion...


Offline Monsieur Croche

  • Veteran member
  • *
  • Posts: 1439
Re: Edgard Varèse's Lost Works
« Reply #5 on: November 04, 2016, 02:48:17 AM »
"What happened to those pieces? Incredibly, most of them were destroyed by a warehouse fire at his publishers in 1918, during the Berlin uprisings that marked the end of the war."

"Most of his other early scores were lost, but Bourgogne survived, only to be destroyed 40 years later by the composer himself in a fit of depression."

That warehouse fire (why does this article not mention the publisher's name?, if I recall, account for a good lump of lost scores by a number of composers of the era, French and otherwise.  It was an era of no photocopy, and many of these scores and their parts were handwritten, and there was only one copy!

https://atuneadayblogdotcom.wordpress.com/tag/bluthner-hall/


Best regards.
~ I'm all for personal expression; it just has to express something to me. ~

Offline Dax

  • Full Member
  • *
  • Posts: 640
  • Location: London
Re: Edgard Varèse's Lost Works
« Reply #6 on: November 04, 2016, 12:08:36 PM »
The one (only one?) which survived is the brief song Un grand sommeil noir which doesn't give too much indication of later tendencies. Attractive but not earth-shattering.

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=pWyTe78X9F4

Tony Beaumont's orchestration (easily found after the above) is an intriguing suggestion of how those hard-edged piano sounds translate.


Offline EddieRUKiddingVarese

  • Full Member
  • *
  • Posts: 434
  • "Everyone is born with genius, but most people onl
  • Location: Father of Electronic muse
Re: Edgard Varèse's Lost Works
« Reply #7 on: November 04, 2016, 03:04:52 PM »
"What happened to those pieces? Incredibly, most of them were destroyed by a warehouse fire at his publishers in 1918, during the Berlin uprisings that marked the end of the war."

"Most of his other early scores were lost, but Bourgogne survived, only to be destroyed 40 years later by the composer himself in a fit of depression."

That warehouse fire (why does this article not mention the publisher's name?, if I recall, account for a good lump of lost scores by a number of composers of the era, French and otherwise.  It was an era of no photocopy, and many of these scores and their parts were handwritten, and there was only one copy!

https://atuneadayblogdotcom.wordpress.com/tag/bluthner-hall/


Best regards.

Nice summary Crochie
"Everyone is born with genius, but most people only keep it a few minutes"
 and I need the knits, the double knits!

Offline EddieRUKiddingVarese

  • Full Member
  • *
  • Posts: 434
  • "Everyone is born with genius, but most people onl
  • Location: Father of Electronic muse
Re: Edgard Varèse's Lost Works
« Reply #8 on: November 04, 2016, 03:13:43 PM »
The one (only one?) which survived is the brief song Un grand sommeil noir which doesn't give too much indication of later tendencies. Attractive but not earth-shattering.

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=pWyTe78X9F4

Tony Beaumont's orchestration (easily found after the above) is an intriguing suggestion of how those hard-edged piano sounds translate.

Very cool was nice to hear
"Everyone is born with genius, but most people only keep it a few minutes"
 and I need the knits, the double knits!

Offline jochanaan

  • Veteran member
  • *
  • Posts: 4702
    • Musician, Music Instructor and Piano Tuner
Re: Edgard Varèse's Lost Works
« Reply #9 on: November 10, 2016, 10:10:56 AM »
What would interest me about these lost works is how they might show his development from the Impressionist master who wrote Un grand sommeil noir to the supreme modernist he became.  Of his mature scores, Ameriques and Offrandes alone hint at what might have come before, with their hints of tonality and sensuous tonal palette.

But perhaps he said it best: "They call me an 'experimental' composer, but that is incorrect.  When a work reaches the public, it is a finished product, not an experiment.  My experiments go into the waste-paper basket."  (I'm typing from memory, so that quote is probably inaccurately quoted. :-[ )  It is well-known that he wanted to be judged by his later works, and at least in later times seems to have considered the loss of the earlier works no great one.
Imagination + discipline = creativity