While the pandemic is soon making the situation unbearable for music life, a surprising amount of art survives by finding new outlets. Lasse Thoresen’s «Invocation of Earth in the Reflection of Glory» was never performed during this summer’s Virtuoso & Belcanto-festival in Lucca, Italy, but the work was nevertheless written and its first performance made available in a video...
Thoresen often brings in spiritual or metaphysical elements in his works, and this Invocation is the fourth one in a series of invocations. Here the theme is to look at creation «in the light of an illumined consciousness» - and much more. The tonal language is what Thoresen calls «spectro-tonal». Spectral music is based on analyses of overtone-series, and one may also regard tonality as originating from the natural overtones. The music is actually written in a much-expanded tonality, which makes it easy to relate to the tonal language. It begins with a single c-sharp in piano pianissimo (PPP), which is expanded by another note, and yet another till we have got an A-major chord. The sonorities are slim, ethereal, and the chord gives some weight and substance to the movement. By quietly adding bass notes crossing the regular and quiet pulse, Thoresen begins slowly to create motion. After three minutes there are quick passages under the chords that have grown denser, until a section in which only the accompanying parts are left, and where he just lets the textures tell a story about sound-color, and the virtuosity becomes the most important element in the narrative.
In this way Thoresen builds further, and does in no way restrain the demands he makes to the pianist. The pianistic technique he employs is rooted in the great pianistic masters, such as Liszt, Debussy and Messiaen. Although the music certainly is composed with intricate structures and the spiritual inspiration is fundamental, the musical sound plays with one’s senses.
Moreover, the music is an impressive reading of the pianistic techniques in a spectro-tonal perspective. Thoresen paints colours in all nuances imaginable, and often the speed is so high that one loses the grasp on the melody, leaving the kinetic dynamics in the foreground of attention.
The work is extremely hard to play, and Yejin Gil who gave the first performance of two of the other invocations, presents a performance at a very high level. She possesses a superabundance of technical a musical capability allowing Thoresen to draw textures, densities and colors in his great compositional work. We hope that many will find their way to the “festival”.
Magnus Andersson. firstname.lastname@example.org.
mandag 26 October 2021, Klassekampen
Via virtuoso.events the piano piece can be rented for a day at a time or bought for streaming/download whenever one might wish.