Marea

by Magnus Lindberg

Empty sheet

Magnus Lindberg

Marea

Music Finland

Description

Lindberg finished this piece for Beethovenesque orchestra on 11 February 1990 in Cabourg, on the Norman coast, which sheds some light on the title Marea (Tide): "The monotone repetitiveness of tides created by the gravity of the moon and the force of the sea constantly pushing against the seashore felt not too far fetched a metaphor of a piece." Referring to the piece's conclusion, Jouni Kaipainen writes in a booklet accompanying the recording of Marea: "The marvellous ending, flooded with 'tonal' colour, is reminiscent of Debussy. Lindberg fixes his listener in front of a maritime landscape, doubtless that of La mer."

The structure of Marea is based on variation, with the conception of harmony (serial and spectral harmonies) as usual constituting the key aspect of the work. Referring to this piece, Lindberg wrote: "The piece is based on a sequence of 12-tone chords repeated as a chaconne. Every chord has its alter ego, an overtone series, the fundamentals of which together form a bass line (passacaglia). By articulating the cycle differently, with ever different diagonal paths between the two layers, I tried to give the music some direction despite its wave-like repetitive structure."

© Risto Nieminen, 1993

translated by © Nick Le Quesne

© Ircam - Centre Georges-Pompidou, 1993

(From Magnus Lindberg, Helsinki 1996)

Lindberg a terminé sa pièce pour un orchestre beethovenien à Cabourg, sur la côte normande, le 11 février 1990, ce qui éclaire le titre Marea (Marée) : «Cette métaphore ne me semble pas excessive pour décrire cette pièce évoquant la répétition monotone des marées, provoquée par la gravité de la lune, et la mer qui sans cesse repousse les galets.» Jouni Kaipainen écrit sur le livret du disque de Marea, à propos de la conclusion : «Le final génial imbibé de "couleur tonale" s'apparente au monde d'un Debussy. Lindberg cloue son auditeur devant un paysage maritime, sans doute celui de La mer.»

La conception de l'harmonie (les harmonies sérielles et spectrales), constituant comme à l'habitude l'aspect principal de l'oeuvre, la forme de Marea est fondée sur la variation. Marea fut créée à Londres lors d'une série de deux concerts du London Sinfonietta, intitulée «Stravinsky et les jeunes compositeurs finlandais», organisée au Queen Elisabeth Hall. A propos de sa pièce, Lindberg écrivait: «Des accords de douze notes se répètent comme dans une chaconne et chaque accord possède son alter ego, une série d'harmoniques, dont les fondamentaux forment la ligne de basse, une sorte de passacaille. En articulant ce cycle différemment, en employant toujours des voies diagonales différentes entre les deux niveaux, j'ai essayé de donner à la musique une direction malgré ses structures répétitives, simulant des vagues.»

© Risto Nieminen, 1993

© Ircam - Centre Georges-Pompidou, 1993

(From Magnus Lindberg, Ircam 1993)

Marea is scored for a Beethoven-size orchestra. The harmony of this work is clearly anchored on certain tonal centres, the role of which resembles to some extent (but not entirely) that of the tonics of classical-romantic music. Subsequently, the treatment of form in Marea is quite firmly established, which (together with the instrumentation) gives the work a more classical character. Just as saturated chords play the leading role in Marea, the supporting role is played by the orchestral texture, which is in a continuous state of transformation. The title is Italian for tide, and accordingly the mechanism of the music is wave-like, at once friendly and safe in its regularity, and slightly threatening in its attacking power. In Marea we can hear distant, individually tinged echoes of Beethoven, Sibelius and Richard Strauss, and quite definitely ones of Debussy at the very end.

[writer unknown]

(Warsaw Autumn 1994)


Instrumentation

2222 2111 11 0, pno, str [fl+pic, 1ehn, 1bcl, 1cfag]


Category

Works for Orchestra or Large Ensemble


Premiere

London Sinfonietta, cond. Esa-Pekka Salonen, London, April 26, 1990.


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