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Michel Chion
1947 -
France
Picture Picture Picture
M.Chion
Michel Chion (16/01/1947), a French composer, from Creil (Oise). After literary and musical studies, Chion began in 1970 to work for the ORTF (French Radio and Television Organization) Service de la recherche, where he was assistant to Pierre Schaeffer at the Paris’ Conservatoire national de musique, producer of broadcasts for the GRAM, and publications director for the Ina-GRM, of which he was a member from 1971 to 1976. It was there that he met Robert Cahen, composer and video artist, and with whom he entered into a long-lasting friendship and collaboration.
Requiem
Period:Modernism
Composed in:1973
Musical form:mass
Text/libretto:Latin mass + Our Father and some other texts
Duration:37'16''
Label(s):Empreintes Digitales IMED 9312
INA AM 689.05 (LP)
This requiem contains:
- Requiem aeternam 5'32
- Kyrie eleison 1'37
- Épître 1'12
- Dies irae 6'00
- Domine Deus 1'53
- Évangile 3'28
- Sanctus 2'29
- Pater Noster-Agnus Dei 2'17
- Lux aeterna 1'39
- Libera me 10'37
Duration: 37'16''
As with classical requiems, the text of this requiem is that of the Funeral mass, to which are added an 'Épître' (Epistle) (3), an 'Évangile'(Gospel) (6) and the 'Our Father', the 'Pater Noster-Agnus Dei' (8). It is presented in its original language (Latin or Greek), on rare occasions in French. The requiem was composed whilst thinking about the troubled minority of the living, rather than the silent majority of the dead. To the listener, it takes the form of an uneven dramatic course, the turnings and defections telling of a fundamental uncertainty in the face of life, death and faith. At the level of form, the piece is based on a system of echoes and correspondence that is organized in a symmetrical fashion around an axis found in the middle of the work: movement 10 incorporates elements already heard in movement 1, movement 9 has elements from movement 2, etc, with variants and dissymmetries in the detail. The axis for this construction is to be found in the 6th movement ('Évangile'), where a symbolic rupture of the tape occurs, a breaking of the piece itself, that opens a gap of eternity in the flow of time, allowing a glimpse of ‘something else.’ With the requiem, my intention was not to deliver a message or a manifesto, whether pro- or anti-religious. Rather, the piece is a personal testimony, in which I invite the listener to project himself, if he should like to dwell in this music of his experience and sensibility. The requiem was produced at the studios of the Groupe de recherches musicales (GRM) in Paris (France) and was premiered on March 19, 1973 at the Théâtre Récamier in Paris, in a concert given by the GRM. The work was commissioned by the Ina-GRM. Released in 1973 on the Ina-GRM label (AM68905), the requiem was awarded the Grand prix du disque of the Académie du disque français in 1978.