Heppener, Robert

Robert Heppener was born in Amsterdam in 1925. He died on August 25, 2009 in Bergen. He studied piano with Jan Odé and Johan van den Boogert at the Conservatory of ...

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Eglogues : for orchestra, (1963) / Robert Heppener

Publisher: Amsterdam: Donemus, [1982]
Publisher's number: 03923
Genre: Orchestra
Subgenre: Orchestra
Scoring: fl fl(pic) 2ob 2cl 2fg 4h 2trp 2trb timp 3perc hp str
Remarks: Versie 1980. - In opdracht van het Nederlands Studenten Orkest. - Met financiële steun van het Prins Bernhardfonds. - Cop. 1963. - Tijdsduur: ca. 16'
Duration: 18'00"
Year of composition: 1963
Status: fully digitized (real-time delivery)

Program note (English): (Première: 18 January 1964 - Bergen - Netherlands Student Orchestra under the direction of Jan Brussen) - Eglogues (Pastoral songs) consists of four movements, all of which show a somewhat fragmentary and abrupt character. The score is preceded by a motto with the initial lines of a poem by Saint-John Perse, giving a picture of our age, an age in which both the confusion and uncertainty of man on the threshold of a still unknown future occupy a central position. The motto is: "Grand âge, nous voici. Fraîcheur du soir sur les hauteurs, souffle du large sur tous les seuils, et nos fronts mis à nu pour de plus vastes cirques..." (Great age, here we stand. The evening breeze on the heights, the breath of space over each threshold and our foreheads bare before even more awe-inspiring mountain ranges). The poet is evoking an image of the age in which we live, using metaphors borrowed from nature, namely those of the mountain range with all the majesty, uncertainty and fatality that
one experiences in such a landscape. I therefore chose as title Eglogues - pastoral songs. The titles of the four sections - Paysage, Pierres, Vents and Cirque - on the one hand hark back to the images from nature in the motto, but it is intended that the msuic should be more than mere impressions of nature. The first movement provides a general orienting survey: the landscape that one sees around and beneath one on a mountain ridge, partly peaceful, partly terrifying. The second movement is rapid in tempo with a striking lashing solo for the timpani, which symbolises the force of the mountain wind and the impressions it makes on men. In the third movement massive and rebellious sounds break loose in a rudimentary fugato after moments of menacing quiet. The last movement has the character of a hymn, full of the realisation of one's own insignificance opposite mighty nature and, at the same time, opposite the great unknown future. It serves as an epilogue, the pessimistic tone of which
is clearly bound up with the poem. - ROBERT HEPPENER

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