Henri SAUGUET (1901-1989).

Lot 245
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Estimation :
7000 - 8000 EUR
Henri SAUGUET (1901-1989).
MUSICAL MANUSCRIPT autographed by "Henri Sauguet", L'Oiseau a vu tout ça, cantata for baritone voice and string orchestra (1960) ; notebook of 58 folio pages (35 x 27,5 cm; traces of yellowed scotch tape). Orchestral score of this beautiful and moving cantata. This cantata for baritone and string orchestra was composed in May 1960 on a moving poem by Jean CAYROL (1911-2005), inspired by the torture he had suffered during his arrest as a Resistance fighter: "A ruined man with arms too long who stood around the trunk"... It was premiered on 3 September 1960 at the Festival in Besançon, by the baritone Louis-Jacques Rondeleux with the Kammerorchester der Saar, conducted by Karl Ristenpart. The work, which lasts 18 minutes, was published by Heugel and dedicated "To Louis-Jacques Rondeleux, Karl Ristenpart and the city of Besançon". The day after the premiere, Bernard Gavoty wrote: "What did he see, the bird on the branch? Neither the flight of winter nor the blossoming of flowers, but the torture of a man tied to the tree itself and skilfully tortured by the executioner. The strength and interest of this moving page lies in the antithesis between the innocence of the bird who looks on without understanding and the despair of the man who knows he is dying. To translate this cruel poem by Jean Cayrol into music, Sauguet did not, as one might have thought, and feared, radically change his best manner - that of an elegiac musician. On a theme of twelve notes - which gave the dodecaphonists a hope that was quickly dashed - Sauguet embroiders a whole series of verses, as in a Gregorian prose. Avoiding realistic descriptions of what is happening, he follows the progression of the drama from within. At times, it even seemed to me that the bird was lending its fresh voice to put a little poetry in this night of horror. [...] this Cantata is an image of pathos and sincerity in Sauguet's work, rich in colourful pages, which does him credit" (Le Figaro, 6 September 1960). " L'Oiseau a vu tout cela, a cantata for baritone and string orchestra on an admirable poem by Jean Cayrol, is one of the major works of our time. It is no longer possible for the artist to be detached in the face of unleashing violence and oppressive cruelty. [...] the simplicity, the firmness of the writing and the order of the style are a counterweight to the overwhelming emotion that emanates from this poem and this music united in an indissoluble alliance. That the heart shudders like this and that the pen does not tremble, is this not the sign of a superior serenity and the surest guarantee of the absolute beauty of a work? (Jean Roy). "This pastoral-sounding title covers a tragedy with a modest sweetness: the torture and death of a man tied to a tree, and in this tree, the only witness to this agony, a bird. [...] Made up of harmonic tensions, rhythmic impulses, great melodic outbursts alternating with moments of almost serene tragic immobility, the music closely follows the poem without ever trying to comment on it. Listening to and echoing the inner feelings of the tortured man, it allows the emotion, distress and resignation of the one who is about to die in front of his executioners to emerge. This cantata was composed between Passion Sunday and Easter Day 1960. [...] Anxious to preserve the vibrant intensity and restrained emotion of Jean Cayrol's poem, the musician wanted only the strings to orchestrate the gravity of the song" (Raphaël Cluzel). The manuscript is carefully written down in black ink on 16-line paper; dated at the end "Coutras 17/27 May 60", it served as a conductor. The orchestra is composed of: first violins I (2) and II (2), second violins I (2) and II (2), 3 violas, 2 cellos and double bass. Discography: Michel Piquemal, Ensemble instrumental Jean-Walter Audoli, dir. Jean-Walter Audoli (Arion 1989)
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