Hidden Voice 2


chamber ensemble of 12 players and CD
Electronics with Live Performers, Mixed Chamber Ensemble
picc.ob.cl.bsn - 2 hn - perc(1): t.bells/crot/SD/susp.cym - vln.db - concertante string trio (vln.vla.vlc)
Commissioned by Sinfonia 21, with help provided by the Arts Council of England, and Le Nouvel Ensemble Moderne
First Performance
15.5.99, Imperial College, London: Sinfonia 21/Martyn Brabbins

Score, parts and CD for hire

Programme Notes
HIDDEN VOICE (2) is a companion piece to my HIDDEN VOICE (1). The basic idea is that the principal material - rather chorale or song-like – is played very softly and tenderly throughout and is often almost hidden by the other sounds of the ensemble. Referring to Baudelaire's 'douce langue natale’ the music invokes the secret language of the 'mother' or God or of a past life - however the most intimate inner voice is described: the voice that is usually suppressed in the psychology of ordinary life but which occasionally and sensationally surfaces. The two layers of the music are an expressionistic string trio which is violently active, and behind it, in the distance, the winds which remain serene, slow and chorale-like, in a different time-world, turning round and round on the same few chords and eventually transforming into a gentle lullaby of sweetness. The trio also transforms - into an ethereal weightless and rapid sheen. There is also a third layer played back electronically from distant speakers; this echoes the first movement in a dream like memory giving a vast spatial expansion to the inner memories. Hidden Voice (2) was written for and commissioned by two ensembles to which I am very attached: Sinfonia 21 and Le Nouvel Ensemble Moderne, to whose tenth birthday celebrations this is a small contribution. My thanks also to the Arts Council of England for help with the English part... Jonathan Harvey

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'Hidden Voice 2' reviews

'… its music airbound and weightless, contrasts with a choral-like ensemble to make a lapidary flux of ideas, saying more in an evocative few minutes that many manage in an entire symphony.' Read more

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