Luna llena #6
I would not wish a State upon anyone
Records of demonstrations, altercations and complaints during the month of October 2019, in Barcelona, Girona, Tarragona, Madrid, Bilbao, Chile, Hong Kong and South Korea.
These musical works have been chosen because they were conceived during or under the influence of World War II.
Messiaen (Avignon December 10, 1908 – Clichy, Île-de-France, April 27, 1990), was a soldier of the French Army during the Battle of France. He was taken prisoner in 1940 in Verdun, and interned in a prison camp, Stalag VII A, in Görlitz. There he found several captive musicians: Jean Le Boulaire (violinist), Étienne Pasquier (cellist) and Henri Acoca (clarinetist), for whom he composed a trio. Later, in the late 1940s and early 1941 he composed the “Quartet for the End Times,” inspired by a passage from the Biblical Revelation, coupled with the privations and confinement to which he was subjected. He did it for piano, violin, cello and clarinet, because they were the instrumentalists he had available.
The above mentioned, plus Messiaen at the piano, premiered the quartet on January 15, 1941, with an audience composed of prisoners and guardians, who listened with great attention. During that year of 1941, Messiaen was released from the prison camp, and was able to resume his activity as a musician in France.
Shostakovich (St. Petersburg, September 25, 1906 – Moscow, August 9, 1975) was trapped in Leningrad, his hometown, when the Germans began the siege in early September 1941. For a few weeks he served as a volunteer firefighter, in addition to direct a famous harangue to his fellow citizens on the radio. During that time, Shostakovich composed the first three movements of the symphony, and then was evacuated (in October) with his family to Kuibyshev (today, Samara). The composition was finished on December 27, 1941.
The premiere of the 7th symphony took place on March 5, 1942, in Kuibyshev, by the Bolshoi Theater Orchestra, and was broadcast to the entire Soviet Union and its western allies. The work quickly became popular, as a symbol of the Soviet struggle against Nazism, and was widely performed by orchestras of all allied countries; For example, in the 1942-43 season, it was played 62 times in the United States. After the war it became unpopular in the West, because it was seen as a Soviet totalitarian work, until it has been rehabilitated a few years ago.
Schönberg (Vienna, September 13, 1874 – Los Angeles, July 13, 1951) was of Jewish origin (in fact, he converted to Judaism since Catholicism in 1933), and lived in Paris since 1933, and in Los Angeles since 1936 He had worked for some years in Germany, and the rise of Nazism prompted him to leave the country and return to Judaism.
The work, composed throughout 1947, is a tribute to the victims of the Holocaust, and is set in the Warsaw ghetto. The text is also from Schönberg himself. The work has only one movement, quite short (about seven minutes).
Olivier Messiaen – Quatuor pour la fin du Temps (1941)
- Liturgie de cristal
- Vocalise, pour L’Ange qui annonce la fin du Temps
- Abîme des oiseaux
Dmitri Shostakovich – Symphony No. 7 in C Major, Op. 60 ‘Leningrad’_ III. Adagio (1941)
Arnold Schöenberg – Opus 46 A Survivor from Warsaw (1947)
Dmitri Shostakovich – Symphony No. 7 in C Major, Op. 60 ‘Leningrad’_ IV. Allegro non troppo (1941)