Octet Plus

for soprano, flute, clarinet, 2 bassoons, 2 trumpets, 2 trombones

Description

First performance: 25 September 2008 – Strassbourg
Ensemble Linea
Barbara Hannigan, soprano
Conductor: Jean-Philipp Wurtz

 

OCTET was commissioned by the Reina Sofia School of Music and was composed in memoriam of Karlheinz Stockhausen.

The number ‘8’ is linked to Stockhausen in a number of ways: he would have turned 80 in 2008 and he would mostly use the 8-channel sound technique in his electronic compositions, for example in ‘Octophonie’.

OCTET is the musical realisation of Samuel Beckett’s radio play “Embers”. Some extracts of it are also set to music in another version titled OCTET PLUS, where an additional soprano solo appears. The two pieces do not need to be performed together.

The unusual wind-instrument arrangement (flute, clarinet, two bassoons, two trumpets, two trombones) makes it possible for the musicians to perform Stravinsky’s Octet in their concert programme.

Synopsis

Text: fragments from Beckett’s Embers

Henry:
That sound you hear is the sea, we are sitting on the strand.
I mention it because the sound is so strange, so unlike the sound of the sea,
that if you didn´t see what it was you wouldn´t know what it was.

I never finished anything, everything always went on for ever.

Riding Master:
Now Miss! Elbows in Miss!  Hands down Miss! Now Miss!
Back straight Miss! Knees in Miss! Now Miss! Tummy in Miss!
Chin up Miss! Now Miss! Eyes front Miss! Now Miss! Now Miss!

Henry:
Waiting in the dark, no light, only the light of the fire,
and no sound of any kind, only the fire.
Dead silence then, not a sound, only the fire.
Silence in the house, not a sound.

Ada:
I hope you put on your jaegers. Did you put on your jaegers, Henry?

Henry: What happened was this, I put them on and then I took them off again and then I put them on again and then I took them off again and then I took them on again and then I –

Ada:  Have you them on now?

Henry: I don´t know.

 

Performances

22 Nov, 2014
Paris, France

Eötvös: Steine, Duo from "Le Balcon", Octet plus, Sonata per sei

Ensemble Intercontemporain
Conductor: Peter Eötvös

1 Nov, 2012
Seoul, South Korea

Eötvös: Octet plus

Seoul Music Festival
Cond: Peter Eötvös
October-November 2012

14 May, 2011
London, UK

Eötvös portrait concert

BBC London

Paris-Dakar
Octet Plus
Derwischtanz
Sonata per sei
Psalm 151
Guildhall Ensemble, cond. Richard Baker

zeroPoints
Psychokosmos (Miklos Lukács, cimbalom)
Levitation (Richard Hosford, John Bradbury clarinets)
IMA (BBCSC + BBC Singers)
BBC Symphony Orchestra, cond. Peter Eötvös

Films:
"The Seventh Door" - portrait film
"Three sisters" - opera film

Barbican Center

27 Oct, 2009
Madrid, Spain

Eötvös: Octet plus, Kosmos, Natasha, Sonata per sei

Plural Ensemble, Madrid

Cond: Jean-Philippe Wurtz

26 Oct, 2009
Madrid, Spain

Eötvös: Octet plus, Kosmos, Natasha, Sonata per sei

Plural Ensemble, Madrid

Cond: Jean-Philippe Wurtz

14 Oct, 2009
Budapest, Hungary

Eötvös: Cadenza, Snatches of a conversation, Natasha, Octet plus, Sonata per sei

Linea Ensemble
Cond: Jean-Philippe Wurtz
Budapest Autumn Festival

21 Mar, 2009
Caen, France

Eötvös: Cadenza, Octet Plus, Natasha, Sonata per sei

Ensemble Linea

Cond: Jean-Philippe Wurtz

29 Jan, 2009
New York, USA

Eötvös: Shadows, Encore, Octet plus, Psy, Derwischtanz, Snatches of a conversation

Composer portrait

Carnegie Hall

26 Oct, 2008
Vilnius, Lithuania

Eötvös: Snatches of a conversation, Octet Plus

Gaida Festival Vilnius
Ensemble Modern

Conductor: Peter Eötvös
Barbara Hannigan, soprano

25 Sep, 2008
Strasbourg, France

Eötvös: Octet plus

Ensemble Linea

Cond: Jean-Philipp Wurtz
Barbara Hannigan, soprano

Details

Genre:
Duration:
20 minutes
Date:
2008

Publisher information

Orchestration     

TITLE Dur. Soloists & choir fl ob cl bcl bn   hn tpt tbn tba   perc pf hp   vn1 vn2 va vc db Other Tech
Octet Plus
Ensemble
20'sop10102 0220 000 00000

flute, clarinet, 2 bassoons, 2 trumpets, 2 trombones

Further information

OCTET wurde von der Reina Sofia School of Music, Madrid in Auftrag gegeben und  in memoriam an Karlheinz Stockhausen geschrieben.

Die Zahl “Acht” steht in mehrfacher Beziehung zu Stockhausen, dessen  achzigster Geburtstag 2008 gewesen wäre.
In seinen elektronischen Kompositionen (z.B. “Octophonie”) hat
Stockhausen hauptsächlich eine achtkanälige Technik verwendet.

OCTET ist eine musikalische Realisierung von Samuel Beckett´s Hörspiel  “Embers” (“Aschenglut”), aus dem einige Textausschnitte in einer  weiteren Version mit zusätzlichem Sopran-Solo unter dem Titel OCTET PLUS  vertont wurden.
Beide Stücke können unabhängig voneinander aufgeführt werden.

Die ungewöhnliche Bläserbesetzung (Flöte, Klarinette, zwei Fagotte, zwei  Trompeten, zwei Posaunen) ermöglicht den Spielern des gleich besetzten Octets von Strawinsky ihr Repertoire zu erweitern.

/Peter Eötvös/

Sound

Recordings