Valise

VALISE (1993)

FOR FLUTE, PIANO AND PERCUSSION

Programme note

This work is composed of several solos, duos and trios that were strung together somewhat overlapping. Each category has its own characteristics. The solos are based on harmonic resonances (flute harmonics, piano resonances and a bowed cymbal giving a whole spectrum of harmonic sounds), each duo combination on a specific interval and the trios on ascending modes. Within the given time limits a fragment is to be repeated several times, each time in a different tempo.


Apart from that, Valise (an anagram of C'est la vie) contains some 'autobiographical' elements: different instrumental manners of writing coming from other compositions of mine that were put in another context.


There are several references to the music of Morton Feldman in this work, which is why it is dedicated to him. First, of course, the instrumentation (flute, piano and percussion), of which Feldman claimed to be the inventor (like Haydn had invented the string quartet). Also, I quote the ascending scale from Why Patterns?, although this time in a totally different metrical/rhythmical (or notational) environment.


Scored for:

  • flute
  • piano
  • percussion:

    vibraphone, Glockenspiel, 3 triangles, suspended cymbal [with bow], hi-hat, bass drum [with pedal], ocarina


Duration: ca. 9 minutes


First performance:

23 May 1994, het kerkje van Fransum, by Eleonore Pameijer, flute; Anita van Groningen à Stuling, piano; Ger Wolthuis, percussion


Publication: Amsterdam: Donemus, © 1996

Other performances

After the first performance, Valise has been performed by various ensembles, among other places

- in Bergen (NL) on 27 February 1998 by members of the Ives Ensemble (Rik Andriessen, flute; Arnold Marinissen, percussion; John Snijders, piano) in the Ruïnekerk

- in Amsterdam (NL), on 5 March 1998 by members of the Ives Ensemble (Rik Andriessen, flute; Arnold Marinissen, percussion; John Snijders, piano) in De IJsbreker 

- in Fribourg (CH) on 16 May 1998, by Ensemble KONTEXT (Kathrin Bürgin, flute; Juan Manuel Chavez, percussion; Anmari Will, piano) at Centre le Phénix, Rue des Alpes 7

- in Basel (CH) on17 May 1998, by Ensemble KONTEXT (Kathrin Bürgin, flute; Juan Manuel Chavez, percussion; Anmari Will, piano) at Kaskadenkondensator, Burgweg 7

- in Zwolle (NL) on 6 October 2002, by Newman Ensemble (Mirjam Slats, flute; Marleen Verhoef, percussion; Steven Faber, piano) at the Stedelijk Museum 

- in Tilburg (NL) on 6 april 2008, by members of the Ives Ensemble in Museum de Pont

- in Ottawa (CAN) on 26 februari 2009, by members of the Ives Ensemble at Tabaret Hall, University of Ottawa, Canada 

- in Hartford (USA) on 22 March 2012, by Kelli Kathman, flute; Bill Solomon, percussion; Sayun Chang, piano at  Centinel Hill Hall Auditorium, Hartford Capitol Community College 


CD Recording

CD recording:

Donemus Music+Practice CV 63 (1997)

Sketch

Form scheme for Valise, indicating the distribution of solo, duo and trio combinations

From the press:

“The work is an exploratory journey into the regions of the overtones (...) Flutist Mirjam Slats had to balance on the edge of noise and tone, in the no man's land between one overblown overtone and the next, and did so very convincingly.”


[Zwolse Courant, 8 October 2002]


“(...) the six composers on the new Donemus CD (Ron Ford, Richard Rijnvos, Micha Hamel, Richard Ayres, Ivo van Emmerik and Gene Carl) use (...) rational means in a search for unheard sounds that the composer 'would never hear if he acted out his imagination' (...) these six pieces [are] composed discourses based on questions that arise from the sound material itself.”


[De Volkskrant, 15 August 1997]


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