Claude Vivier (1948-1983)

Started by Brewski, April 13, 2007, 12:43:33 PM

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Brewski

I have liked all that I've heard (not that there's much!) by Claude Vivier, especially Lonely Child and Orion.  Tomorrow afternoon I'm finally seeing Kopernikus, the first half of Rêves d'un Marco Polo, and can't wait since Lis and others have raved about it. 

--Bruce

"I set down a beautiful chord on paper—and suddenly it rusts."

- Alfred Schnittke

Twitter: @BruceHodgesNY

Maciek

Well, what can I say? That copy for me still hasn't surfaced. But I'll join in as soon as it does! ;D The anticipation is killing me, though. ;)

Maciek

Brewski

On Saturday I saw some of Vivier's Rêves d'un Marco Polo, and mostly enjoyed it.  We watched the Marco Polo disc (the other one is Kopernikus) including Shiraz, for solo piano (stunningly played by Marc Couroux), Lonely Child (with Susan Narucki singing in radiant form), Zipangu, Wo bist du Licht! (with Kathryn Harries), and the amazing finale, Glaubst du an die Unsterblichkeit der Seele (Do you believe in the immortality of the soul) (also with Narucki, who is just superb).

It is staged by Pierre Audi on a huge steel catwalk-type structure (for the Netherlands Opera), with the ASKO and Schoenberg Ensembles playing magnificently, conducted by Reinbert de Leeuw.  Vivier's sound world is passionate, gutsy and often sad, particularly the finale, which was left unfinished and has Narucki just ending in mid-sentence.  You can hear the occasional influences of so-called "spectral" composers in his writing, but Vivier is hard to categorize, which makes him so interesting.

Almost more compelling was the hour-long documentary on his life by Cherry Duyns, who uses interviews with people who knew him, some obviously rare footage of the composer, and footage from the rehearsals for the works on the DVD.  Given that Vivier's music is not performed all that often, it is wonderful to have it done so well here, and filmed so beautifully. 

--Bruce
"I set down a beautiful chord on paper—and suddenly it rusts."

- Alfred Schnittke

Twitter: @BruceHodgesNY

not edward

Bringing this thread back to life: a Guardian article about Vivier today mentions an upcoming webcast of his music:

http://music.guardian.co.uk/classical/story/0,,2258674,00.html
"I don't at all mind actively disliking a piece of contemporary music, but in order to feel happy about it I must consciously understand why I dislike it. Otherwise it remains in my mind as unfinished business."
-- Aaron Copland, The Pleasures of Music

Lethevich



I have this disc somewhere, the only I have heard by Vivier. It's extremely impressive. I generally find modernism a bit difficult, but like Berio, I found Vivier's sound world very easy to accept, and with a fair bit of emotion involved.
Peanut butter, flour and sugar do not make cookies. They make FIRE.

springrite

Another composer whom I have heard so much of but have never heard a single note! So much to explore. So little time (and resources).

I know he is very original, but whose music is it closest to?

not edward

Quote from: Lethe on February 22, 2008, 04:18:54 AM


I have this disc somewhere, the only I have heard by Vivier. It's extremely impressive. I generally find modernism a bit difficult, but like Berio, I found Vivier's sound world very easy to accept, and with a fair bit of emotion involved.
That's a phenomenal disc, and it's a great shame that it's out of print. It would definitely be my prime recommendation for anyone interested in the composer.

Most of the other discs I've seen have little distribution outside of Canada, unfortunately.
"I don't at all mind actively disliking a piece of contemporary music, but in order to feel happy about it I must consciously understand why I dislike it. Otherwise it remains in my mind as unfinished business."
-- Aaron Copland, The Pleasures of Music

not edward

Quote from: springrite on February 22, 2008, 04:21:20 AM
Another composer whom I have heard so much of but have never heard a single note! So much to explore. So little time (and resources).

I know he is very original, but whose music is it closest to?
Nobody, really. There is some similarity to the spectralist school, and his use of diatonic material within a non-tonal context has some parallels to the later Ligeti, while the ecstatic, remote language might remind some of Scriabin or Stockhausen.
"I don't at all mind actively disliking a piece of contemporary music, but in order to feel happy about it I must consciously understand why I dislike it. Otherwise it remains in my mind as unfinished business."
-- Aaron Copland, The Pleasures of Music

Brewski

Quote from: edward on February 22, 2008, 04:24:31 AM
Nobody, really. There is some similarity to the spectralist school, and his use of diatonic material within a non-tonal context has some parallels to the later Ligeti, while the ecstatic, remote language might remind some of Scriabin or Stockhausen.

Edward, thanks for the info about the broadcast, and Lethe, other than the DVD I think that de Leeuw recording is the only one I have, too.  Well worth seeking out. 

Like that description of his work above, too.  Like some other composers, I find I can't listen to a huge amount of his work at one sitting--just too intense--but his best works definitely repay repeated hearings.

--Bruce
"I set down a beautiful chord on paper—and suddenly it rusts."

- Alfred Schnittke

Twitter: @BruceHodgesNY

uffeviking

Revival of this thread makes me very happy! Thank you Edward!  :-*

I would like to remind you of the post by bhodges:


« on: April 13, 2007, 01:43:33 PM

with the cover of the one and only video of Vivier's work available. It is fascinating to actually see the musicians emitting the sounds, the music, Vivier created; and a true creation they are because as has been said above: Vivier is not related to or close to any other composer. It's all Vivier!

I have another Vivier CD issued by KAIROS with three compositions:

Orion 1979 für Orchester
Siddharta 1976 für Orchester in acht Gruppen
Cinq chansons pour percussion 1980

I'll try to track down the source of the DC.  ;)


springrite

So the DVD is available? I might be going to the States in early May for less than a week. If I do I'd be busy like a bee but, if I get a chance I may look for it.


springrite

Good!  I will see if I can get my (indirect) contact person there to order it for me so I can pick it up when I am there.

BTW, we are planning an Olympics theme concert in Washington DC (or University of Maryland), 100 days before the opening.

uffeviking

Hey! amazon has the other one too - if you have 80 bucks! That's what it will run to with shipping and handling for a USED disc:

http://www.amazon.com/Vivier-Lonely-Zipangu-James-Ottaway/dp/B0000041EX/ref=sr_1_3?ie=UTF8&s=music&qid=1203698020&sr=1-3

springrite

Quote from: uffeviking on February 22, 2008, 07:38:41 AM
Hey! amazon has the other one too - if you have 80 bucks! That's what it will run to with shipping and handling for a USED disc:

http://www.amazon.com/Vivier-Lonely-Zipangu-James-Ottaway/dp/B0000041EX/ref=sr_1_3?ie=UTF8&s=music&qid=1203698020&sr=1-3
Very tempting but I don't want to dip into Kimi's formula and diaper budget!

not edward

The aforementioned Vivier webcast is available at http://www.psappha.com/webcast.asp now.
"I don't at all mind actively disliking a piece of contemporary music, but in order to feel happy about it I must consciously understand why I dislike it. Otherwise it remains in my mind as unfinished business."
-- Aaron Copland, The Pleasures of Music

Brewski

Thanks for posting this, edward!  Their other concerts also look quite interesting!  And believe it or not, I received a postcard announcement from Psappha awhile back--alas, I couldn't hop across the pond to the concert  ;D but I enjoyed getting it.

--Bruce
"I set down a beautiful chord on paper—and suddenly it rusts."

- Alfred Schnittke

Twitter: @BruceHodgesNY

uffeviking

And since I have nothing else to do at a quarter to nine in the morning, I am watching it and enjoy every note! My thanks also, edward:-*

Of course I could play it later in the evening, but I simply can not wait many hours to hear this performance! - It's book-marked. -

Lis

Henk

#18
I also haven't listened to anything by Vivier. I'm very curious. Interesting DVD, Bruce. I recently listened very quickly to a cd of Vivier but I didn't buy it. This cd, already mentioned in this thread:

Brünnhilde ewig

Over a year later, Claude Vivier is at GMG again because I just read in the program listing of this year's Prom's that his Orion will be performed!

I spent a good part of this afternoon watching the astounding DVD of his Rêves d'un Marco Polo. I still can not explain Vivier, he can not be explained, he simply is. A weak attempt would be to explain in the same category as Richard Wagner. Wagner did something that has never been done before him, a Gesamtkunstwerk; Vivier wrote a new creation to be performed on stage, any stage. Subscribers to Gramophone can read an article about him in this month's issue. - page 47 -

We lost him, nothing more to listen to created by this genius.