Program note

Je compris que c’était plus que la musique qui avait besoin de moi mais bien la Vie dans le sens le plus créateur et le plus universel du mot

Claude Vivier

It is said that the title of Paramirabo comes from a mistake by Vivier, who intended to name it Paramaribo in reference to the capital of Suriname, a South American country which there is no indication that Vivier ever visited in his biography. The result is a work of imaginary exoticism that, when listened to, evokes a story for children in music. By considering the instruments as characters - the pastoral naivety of the flute, the lyricism of the violin, the ambivalence of the piano, and the friendly aspect of the cello in its solo - one can clearly hear a dialogue.

A calm and peaceful situation of flute, violin, and cello is quickly disrupted by a violent intervention from the piano. This is followed by exchanges during which the instruments play in alternation, making snippets of childish melodies heard that one would believe to know. As Vivier's works are never quite cheerful, one is not surprised by the long, very calm final section: like an unsettling consensus among the instruments, all seem to wake up from a bad dream.

Martine Rhéaume [viii-07]

Translated from SMCQ



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