Charles Curtis & Dafne Vicente-Sandoval
21.12.2022 – Temple Saint-Théodule, La Tour-de-Peilz
La Becque was delighted to invite you on Wednesday, December 21, 2022 to the Temple Saint-Théodule in La Tour-de-Peilz for an exceptional year-end concert by American cellist Charles Curtis and French bassoonist Dafne Vicente-Sandoval, who performed works by Eliane Radigue and Alvin Lucier
Cellist Charles Curtis has built a unique career between the worlds of classical performance and musical experimentation. The former Principal Cellist of the NDR Symphony Orchestra in Hamburg and a distinguished chamber music performer, he is particularly known for his work with the legendary minimalist composer La Monte Young. Curtis is one of the few musicians to have perfected Young’s highly complex just intonation tunings, and to have performed as a duo with Young, playing works of Terry Jennings and Richard Maxfield. In recent years, Charles Curtis has developed a unique repertoire of major works created specifically for the distinctive qualities of his cello-playing. French composer Éliane Radigue created her very first work for a purely acoustic instrument for Curtis, the hour-long solo Naldjorlak, which Curtis has since performed across the world.
Dafne Vicente-Sandoval is a Paris-born bassoon player who explores sound through contemporary music performance, improvisation and sound installations. Over the last decade, Dafne has dedicated herself to an in-depth instrumental practice, emerging from an intuitive experimentation into the complexities of the bassoon’s acoustical properties. Her work has translated into long-term collaborations with a handful of composers engaged in music that demands a high degree of critical interpretation (Éliane Radigue, Catherine Lamb, Jakob Ullmann, Peter Ablinger, Klaus Lang, Tashi Wada), leading to the creation of a significant body of solo pieces. Dafne also presents solo performances of microphone feedback generated through the resonant spaces of the bassoon itself.
Alvin Lucier, who died in December 2021, is considered a pioneer in contemporary music composition and performance, particularly in electroacoustics and the unveiling of sound’s inherent instabilities. His work, based on principles of echolocation, acoustical physics and room resonance, explores the natural properties of sound in relation to space, propagation and interference.
Same and Different for solo bassoon is one of his last completed compositions, and was composed expressly for bassoonist Dafne Vicente-Sandoval. An electronically generated pure wave tuned at 442 Hz flows from a single loudspeaker while the bassoonist plays a series of 84 long tones consisting of near-unison variations of the pure wave caused by different fingerings. Glacier for solo cello uses graphs mapping the gradual thaw of polar ice caps to time an extended glissando across the range of the cello.
Éliane Radigue (born in 1932) is a pioneering French composer of undulating continuous music marked by patient, virtually imperceptible transformations that purposively unfold to reveal the intangible, radiant contents of minimal sound—its partials, harmonics, subharmonics and inherent distortions. As a student and assistant to musique concrète pioneers Pierre Schaeffer and Pierre Henry in the 1950s and 1960s, she mastered tape splicing techniques, which she applied in the creation of fluid, delicately balanced feedback works. Finding peers among minimalist composers in America, she began working with synthesis in 1971, eventually discovering the ARP 2500 synthesizer, which she would use exclusively for her celebrated electronic works to come.
Occam Océan is a cycle of instrumental works composed by Radigue. Inspired by a fresco that represents the spectrum of electromagnetic waves, this work uses very fine-grained sound tones and produces an atmosphere of semi-consciousness, which escapes acoustic references and approaches a state of waking dream. As they do not have a score, the different pieces of this cycle can be arranged almost endlessly but are inseparable from the artists who perform them.
Alvin Lucier: Same and Different (2021) for bassoon and pure wave oscillator
Alvin Lucier: Glacier (2009) for solo cello
Éliane Radigue: Occam Océan (2011 – ):
Occam River XI (2015) for bassoon and cello
Charles Curtis & Dafne Vicente-Sandoval, photo Aurélien Haslebacher