Commissioned by the International Percussion Centre in Geneva

  • Percussion
  • 10 min

Programme Note

Risonanze Trasparenti (1996)
for percussion

Commissioned by the Centre International des Percussions of Geneva

Duration: 10 minutes

The first (logistical) constraint was to utilise, if not all, at least a large part of the instrumentarium in Michael Jarrell's Assonance VII so that it could be possible to go from one piece to another without having to reinstall all the instruments, and thus, if need be, to link both pieces as, for example, in a piano recital.

Here was a strange prison! But a pleasant one, for Jarrell is a composer whom I hold in high esteem, and I always need a number of constraints when starting out a work in order to feel free to transcend them.

Florent Jodelet, who is the instigator and dedicatee of this piece, is acquainted with my music, and when he asked me to compose under this constraint he knew that the acoustical behaviour of these resonating instruments and their possible combinations in this obbligato installation were in tune with my own sensitivity to percussion.

Here rhythm is a cycle of resonance rather than of pulsation. The form of the piece is a path taken by the performer through the slow mutations of sonic aggregates, constructed on the intersection of the sonorities of each instrument on the one hand, and on the acoustical contrasts produced by the clashes between those sonorities on the other.

In other words, the musical/temporal potential of these transparent resonances is directed to the junction of a paradoxical continuous and a paradoxical discontinuous: the discontinuous being the musical fragments, and the continuous being resonance which is never broken and creates a feeling of expectation, of discontinuance, or of non-pulsation despite the apparent repetition. Moments of silence (those pauses when nothing is heard in order to listen to the transparency of resonance) make the junction tangible: the energy gradually runs out and gathers before the next resounding...

Risonanze Trasparenti was completed the day Sergiu Celibidache died and I ought to think of him again and again, and continue to pay homage to him by remembering the key word about music he uttered (and implemented in his work), which perfectly sums up the essence of the future of music: Das Wunder der Erneuerung ist die Unwiederholbarkeit der Wiederholung (the wonder of renewal is the impossibility of repeating repetition).

© Gualtiero Dazzi, August 1996