Olivier Messiaen is widely revered as a great 20th-century composer. His distinctive music was born of his fascination with experimental modes, complex rhythms, metallic sonorities, and above all, bird songs. In these conversations, Messiaen talks candidly about his sources of inspiration, musical methods, and aesthetic views.
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Text: English (translation)
Original Language: French
When French composer Messiaen died at 83 in 1992, he left behind music that in its time was on the cutting edge, influential, personal, and, improbably enough, also popular. His Quartet for the End of Time, written in a German POW camp in 1941, became a cult hit in the 1970s, and his exotic Turangalila-symphonie is one of the few major additions to the symphonic repertoire since 1945 with many enthusiastic admirers. He based an extensive body of music on birdsong and, as a devout Catholic, composed the only extant body of avant-garde Catholic organ music. Useful as an introduction to this idiosyncratic composer's life and works, this book consists of conversations from 1986 between Messiaen and critic Claude Samuel, discussions that reveal the essence of Messiaen's musical thought and the essential sweetness of his personality. The chapter on birdsong is a particular delight: Messiaen traveled the world, transcribing birdsong in the field. His work with these transcriptions reached apotheosis in the opera St. Francois d'Assise, containing a riotously beautiful depiction of St. Francis' sermon to the birds. A delightful book made more valuable by an accurate and current discography and a bibliography. John Shreffler
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Descripción Hal Leonard Corporation, 2003. Hardcover. Estado de conservación: New. Nº de ref. de la librería B28S4-63
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