Maxime Pascal conducts Grisey's Les Chants de l'Amour

Concert behind closed doors with Le Balcon

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Augustin Muller — Computer music designer

Marie Picaut — Soprano

Myrianne-Fleur Le Ralle — Soprano

Elise Chauvin — Soprano

Pauline Sikirdji — Contralto

Elise Dabrowski — Contralto

Camille Merckx — Contralto

Safir Behloul — Tenor

Manuel Nuñez Camelino — Tenor

Xavier de Lignerolles — Tenor

Mathieu Dubroca — Bass

Thill Mantero — Bass

Florent Baffi — Bass

Program notes

Discover Gérard Grisey's legendary Les Chants de l'Amour with the innovative Le Balcon ensemble! The great Maxime Pascal, a longtime admirer and expert of Grisey's work, leads the festivities in this spectacular show behind closed doors from the Opéra de Lille in northern France.

Les Chants de l'Amour, premiered in 1985 after a commission by the French Ministry of Culture, is a work for twelve human voices—and a thirteenth electronic "voice" created by Grisey himself, which envelops the human voices in a sort of "amniotic liquid," in the composer's words. We witness a dialogue between different vocal registers and this thirteenth voice which, little by little, learns to sing words of love in every language, taken from Julio Cortázar's Rayuela.

The piece is demanding: the tonal range is expansive, the singers execute quarter-tone shifts, and the tempo and intonation vary in order to express the vast spectrum and changing temperaments of human love. To meet these challenges, Maxime Pascal knows he can rely on the excellent ensemble (which he co-founded in 2008) as well as on Augustin Muller, an expert computer music designer. Don't miss this musical experience unlike any other!

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