Louis Andriessen (1939)
Symphony for open strings (1978)
pour douze instruments à cordes solistes
Date de composition :
Durée : 25 minutes
Éditeur : Boosey & Hawkes
Ensemble instrumental 1 par voix [ensemble à cordes famille complète]
- 5 violon, 2 alto, 3 violoncelle, 2 contrebasse
Information sur la création
- 1978, Pays-Bas, la Haye, Conservatoire Royal.
The open-string orchestra consists of twelve soloists. The ensemble has all the chromatic tones over a range of nearly four octaves at its disposal. But for a melody of four consecutive tones four players are required.
The work was written for a group of string players at the Conservatory, a kind of teaching project for ensemble playing and counting.
As regards the composition technique, I employed symphonic procedures: recurring motives, a developing musical motion, and something like a recapitulation. I had not used techniques like these since the fifties, and they could be my answer to the neo-romantic movement: young composers writing once again for the symphonic orchestra. In this sense the Symphony is ambiguous, using ‘symphonic’ techniques while an open-string orchestra will never sound like a real symphony orchestra.
This work has benefited from that discrepancy – in other words, for a symphony orchestra I would have written a different work.