Today another composer important to me : Frederick Martin.
A great french composer, a truly iconoclast who let his inspiration going where it needs to go and not being contained by some useless compositionnal trends.
He has a gigantic compositional corpus, and his music really needs to be more publicly known, has the public really enjoy his music.
Since i really have the feeling that this composer is really under exposed, and his great music has really to be discovered, i asked the composer himself to introduce to everybody his own piano music.
So ... for futur musicologist or sudents , what is going to come are "words from the composer" !
Frédérick MARTIN piano music (by Frédérick Martin)
Op.18: Fil Aimé I (1992) 12’
My first official piano score carries like scars all the post-serial gimmicks I had fed myself on the 15 former years. I’ll rewrite it someday to simplify it.
Op.69: Seize Petits Préludes (2002-2013) 20’
Here, on the other hand, we have 16 short pieces intended for young players practicing. Each piece wears a name, almost telling a tale.
Op.74: Première Sonate (2003-2012) 13’40’’Things become serious here. I pay tribute to the classical three movements form, though perverting it, as the sonata form appears in the last part only. The second movement is a long elegy which always catches the listener’s feelings. The 1st and 3rd movements have been composed three times before satisfaction.
Op.85: Deuxième Sonate (2005-2013) 12’50”Cast in one movement, the 2nd sonata explores directions I hadn’t yet taken. It’s the most unpredictable music for piano I ever wrote, full of twists.
Op.86: Le Cinéma Muet (2005) 4’50’’A short homage to the young Shostakovich, who used to improvise for silent movies to earn his life during the 20s of the past century. It ends with a “spectral fugue”.
Op.101: Les Préludes Enlacés (2007-2013) 12’45’’These three preludes use the same material, growing up in complexity, musically and instrumentally speaking.
Op.113: Sonatine (2009-2013) 10’Some “simple” music. Quite appealing from the start and loaded with tunes.
Op.119: Troisième Sonate (2009-2013) 14’10”The most abstract one. Its two movements seem like two totally opposed brothers, one short and dreamy and introspective, the other one tall and showing off but not so sure of himself.
Op.121: Quatrième Sonate (2010-2013) 22’Four movements this time, opening on a “latina” ambiance to pour its energy into a suspended interrogation, followed by a mad toccata, and ending to an almost 10’ long track using the piano as a huge resonator.
Op.129: Cinquième Sonate (2011) 20’The 5th sonata was the first part of my homage to Liszt. I built it in several continuous sequences as Liszt did in his own sonata, even including a fake fugue as Liszt wrote one, but at the same proportional moment as my elder did, which is sort of a “tour de force”.
Op.133: Sixième Sonate (2011) 21’Second part of my homage to Liszt, I dedicated this one to Nicolas Horvath. Its consonant harmonies counterbalance moments of wild bursts, demanding all 20 fingers of the pianist…
Op.143: Toccata (2012) 7’A toccata indeed, like a boxing champion invading your ears and mind, not stopping before everyone’s knocked out.
Op.144: Septième Sonate (2012) 30’I had always asked myself what would be like some music of mine if I were a repetitive music composer. So I took up the challenge and drew a 30’ evolving line, which suppresses the notion of time. This work I dedicated to the beloved memory of Hans Werner Henze.
Op.150: 24 Préludes (2010-2013) 55’Throughout nearly four years, I have been giving birth to this huge cycle with one thought in mind : to equal Chopin’s and Debussy’s own attempt in the genre. I like to think I haven’t totally failed.
How i discovered Frédérick Martin music:
I pretty forgot how i discovered him. For sure it was more than 10 years ago, when i was not doing concerts yet, and long before i was even thinking about compétitions.
I think at this time, there was a trend about Frank Martin, and i came out totally by accident on Frédérick. I was stuck about his "wired taste" for a composer (but from me it is not an insult, as my tastes are also very wired).
But no recording and very few infos...
There was available at this time his 1st Sonata. I ordered and got a HUGE score (A3 format), i was very annoyed as it was pretty hard to travel with it. But on the other hand it was nice because it was a facsimile !
I remembered that i was shocked about the difficulty of the 3rd movement, but ... the 2nd was really incredible.
My master at this time, did not want me to learn it, as "i should play more known composers" ...
Anyway, years after when i did my first Contemporary Marathon in Prague, i was free to perform anything i wanted, so i finally performed this wonderful 2nd movement !
After Frédérick saw my vidéo (we have some common friends, and specially one i like a lot, Judicaël, the kind of personn you can listen talking for hours without feeling bored, and i guess this is him that shared the link, not sure...), i was able to meet the maestro, and what a wonderful conversation we had!
Again, i was learning tons of things concerning music (he also intrduced me to Jean Catoire), art, compositions ...
You can find some biography in the IRCAM database, but ... since there are no more infos after 1996, we can say that it is really outdated!
You can also to listen to more music :
Ustvolst by Trio polycordes
Le Talisman des Voïvodes by Ensemble MG21
ps: sorry for those links, but for an unknown reason, it is no more possible to get it well shaped...