Most fascinating of all for me was the chance to hear two of Boulez’s own recent works in the flesh: the clangourous Sur Incises for three harps.

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Our composers Pierre Boulez Works sur Incises. Views Read Edit View history.

Pierre Boulez: sur Incises

You will regularly incise information about new scores with free downloads, current prize games and news about our composers. My original intention was to write the main part for the first piano. The pianos therefore obviously represent the principal instruments. I was very surprised by the powerful sound three harps can produce.

The question is what does that mean? As if that wasn’t enough, on Wednesday and Thursday there was a incisew from the Ensemble Intercontemporain and Pierre Boulez in two centenary concerts for Olivier Oncises and Elliott Carter. Relaxed, Jovial and Busy”. Sur Incises, which Boulez completed for the moment at any rate inhas a glittering soundworld that morphs from percussive work-out to a soft-focused stasis on his favourite, radiant harmonies.

So the harps’ entries depend a lot on the different kinds of speed at which this instrument can be handled. Reviewing of a performance of IncisesBoilez Page described it: This situation changes with a recollection of the initial cadenza focusing on the three pianos in order to demonstrate on which kind of periodicity the complete action is based. Remember those bait balls of sardines and assorted small fish species in The Blue Planet?

Why Boulez is like a bait ball | Music | The Guardian

I don’t use steeldrums for the sake of their exotic and folkloric colour but because of the fact that they exceed the usual bounds of the individual families of instruments. What a week at the South Bank in London: This kind of reworking of an earlier piece is characteristic of Boulez, the first instance being Structures.


When the performance ended Just like the fish, you’re trapped by the music’s centripetal focus on a single guiding harmony, which you can only escape when the music stops. A packed Festival Hall gave Boulez a rock-star reception after the music’s coda.

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Anthony Tommasini described a performance of Sur Incises: Pierre Boulez sur Incises. Boulez has used to describe an effect inccises is after in his works.

Why Boulez is like a bait ball

Boulez’s wildly colorful, almost crazed and uncompromisingly difficult music. But are there also transitions to be found or, let’s put it differently, do the harps or percussionists at times take the role of the pianos or of one piano? Topics Music Tom Service on classical music.

Sign up for our newsletter! Another reason is that I did not want to compose a piece for all families of instruments like in Eclat. Threads collapsed expanded unthreaded. Retrieved 19 January Consequently my starting point was three pianos, three harps, three percussionists; also three times three which is nine. Everything changes on the surface — there are passages where everything is speeding along vertiginously, which then contract into pools of slower music — but nothing changes underneath.

In sur Incises I have expanded, stretched this introduction a lot in terms of its duration. Service described a performance: The literature in concerto form does not appeal to me any more.

And that’s when the marlin come — but that’s stretching the metaphor well past breaking point. Carter’s music is also based on pre-determined harmonic fields, but he creates the illusion of dynamic and dramatic change in a piece like the Clarinet Concerto, brilliantly played by Alain Damiens.


By using this site, you agree to the Terms of Use and Privacy Policy. Thus, you can see what you hear. Therefore I produced a piece for three pianos assuming that there already exists enough interesting literature for two pianos and ensembles, especially in the modern age – take for example Bartok’s “Sonata for two pianos and percussion”.

This article about a classical composition is a stub. Boulez revised it in The piece lasts less than ten minutes. Baden-Baden, 18 September Translation: The sheer riot of color is engrossing.

I had the sense last night at the Queen Elizabeth Hall that although the piece was 45 minutes long, it could either have been 20 uncises or and it wouldn’t inciises have mattered. The drama of the music is how Boulez manipulates his musical textures to create moments of stasis and irresistible energy, and everything in between. Next work Tombeau Pierre Boulez Tombeau. I have also considered the possibility of four pianos as this constellation is very attractive and provides a good balance.

By clicking on an affiliate link, you accept that Skimlinks cookies will be set. Yes, it is an ensemble for three pianos which in a way represent the main instruments, three harps and three percussions of certain pitch, also timpani, steel drums, glockenspiel etc.

You can help Wikipedia by expanding it. Show 25 25 50 All. The percussions and also the harps voulez at times completely integrated and sometimes only play a minor role, it depends.