violin and piano

“Visita Interiora Terrae, Rectificandoque, Invenies Occultum Lapidem” is the hermetic and alchemical motto that inspired the composition of the four pieces of Interiora Terræ (2014). All of them are based on a characteristic minimalist material that immediately establishes the particular atmosphere that permeates each of them.

The first is meditative, with the violin enunciating a motif in regular values in the low register, soon joined by the piano, which seems to play in a different metric. Bathed in a rather dark atmosphere at the beginning, the piece opens gradually, passing through various colours (widening of the instrumental tessitura, harmonic colours, canon writing, brutal modulations etc.) all of which brings an intense and passionate climax that stops abruptly on a bass note held by the piano. The initial motif then returns, but as if “dissolved”, the notes become rarefied to end on a question mark.

The second has a falsely playful rhythmic character. It is based exclusively on bars 3/8, 5/8 and 7/8. The tension almost never eases, until the final chord that emerges at the conclusion of an obsessive and frenetic “race to the abyss”.

The third is extremely expressive and melodic and is built on a principle of variations on a sequence of chords. The beginning and the end are bathed in a rather introspective atmosphere that contrasts with the central part, which has a passionate and even violent character.

The fourth is the most openly “minimalist and repetitive” of the cycle. A few melodic-rhythmic cells are gradually built up, the virtuoso surge of notes bringing a kind of luminous apotheosis.

Interiora Terræ is dedicated to the Gemini Duo – Jean-Frédéric Molard (violin) and Jean-Noël Remiche (piano) -, who commissioned the work and ensured its world premiere on November 23, 2014 at the Charlier Museum (Brussels) as part of the International Festival of Contemporary Music Ars Musica.

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