Alfred de Musset’s L’Andalouse is part of a cycle of French art songs for piano and voice entitled “Poésies non choisies”, in which we interweave compositions that we have undertaken for two or four hands, depending on the inspiration that certain poetic evocations may arouse on first reading. “Non choisies” (non selected), then, because the game was really to let ourselves be intoxicated by a text at first, until it penetrates us to the point of feeling it and, when the magic happens, hearing it being born internally. It’s these inspired, spellbinding poems that choose us, breathing their rhythm, their colours, their character, their melody into us… We subsequently proposed an orchestral version of L’Andalouse because its lively, powerfully lyrical and
sparkling character, its warm, sensual colour, and its range requiring a voice that is both bright and suave, led us to believe that this melody would blossom more in the manner of a concert aria, or even an opera aria. We believe, indeed, that the orchestration of L’Andalouse, performed in the manner of Bizet’s famous arias, gives this portrait of a woman the full measure that befits its well-contrasted expressiveness, first liberated then jealously restrained, then finally frenzied, but each time perfectly irresistible, in the image of the original text.
David & Frédérico Alagna
(translation Hjördis Thébault)
1 petite flûte, 2 flûtes, 2 hautbois, 2 clarinettes, 2 bassons, 4 cors, 4 trombones, timbales, cordes