J.W.Nelleke: - His face was charged with beauty...
For voice and ensemble (oboe, clarinet, bassoon, cornet, violin, cello, piano and percussion)
4 Songs on texts by Wilfred Owen.
- Sonnet to a child
- Song of songs
Duration 14:00 minutes
Instrumentation: mezzo soprano/baritone (range B-F), oboe, clarinet + bass clarinet (1 player), bassoon, cornet, violin, cello, piano, glockenspiel + triangle + suspended cymbal + woodblock + piccolo-snare + snaredrum + bass drum (1 player)
The instrumentation of this work is similar to Le Bal Masqué by Poulenc (same players with only the added use of bass clarinet and glockenspiel) with which it can be combined perfectly.
The four poems on which the piece is based are early poemes by Wilfred Owen. Although he is mainly known as a war poet, these poems philosophize about love and life.
The music has been composed as an orchestrated song, i.e. completely conceived after the text. It is through-composed and, like the poems, of a dark and lyrical character which makes for a good contrast with the Poulenc.
The composition is dedicated to Domestica Rotterdam and José Scholten who premiered the work in may 2004.