la petite girafe Miscellaneous

En Voyage


En Voyage —
A story with the little giraffe

Sometimes composers go on a journey. This does not mean that the little giraffe needs to be left alone at home, though.

I have not been counting, how many times one of its four fragile legs fell off the little giraffe. Let’s be honest: It’s not the most resistant animal evolution came up with. However, when it gets down to travelling, this brittleness proves to be somewhat useful. Due to it, the little giraffe fits into a tiny paper box which fits into the camera bag in turn. It has neither building blocks of metal incorporated, nor a rechargeable battery, thus it easily passed all security checks at the airport. We do not know how many extra emissions of carbon dioxide it has caused—we might take that thought into consideration one other time.

On our way to the [‘tactus] Young Composers’ Forum in Brussels which starts this Monday, we stopped at the Munich airport, where the little giraffe watched a parking plane.


Other than that, this place presented itself quite expensive. Don’t get too hungry there. It’s not the place where you’d fancy more than one cappuccino just to kill time too. Try reading a book instead. They have installed seats obviously designed to relax in a rather non-sitting way. Using it cannot be described as lying either. It’s like hanging around in one of those chairs they used to have in spas. Perhaps someone thought that passengers should be compensated somehow for being packed like sardines in a tin in the fuselage of an aeroplane. Not everyone feels as indifferent about that as the little giraffe, I’m convinced.


Brussels gave us a warm welcome in the evening and all the scores have arrived safely in the suitcase. I have already unboxed the little giraffe in order to have its first photo shooting in Belgium. The Belgian Solutions are absolutely hilarious, by the way and culinary investigations into Belgian beer are to be conducted in the coming days of course. But first and foremost I’m looking forward to the composers’ forum in Brussels and Mons and to rehearsing my works A Manifesto Mill with the Brussels Philharmonic and Échos éloquents with the ensemble Musiques Nouvells respectively. Drop by in the next days again as the little giraffe will stay curious and continue to have a thirst for adventure.

Miscellaneous News

[‘tactus] Young Composers’ Forum

Einladung zum [‘tactus] Young Composers’ Forum 2019

Eine internationale Jury wählte aus 94 Einsendungen vier Komponisten für eine Zusammenarbeit mit dem Brussels Philharmonic von 25. bis 27. November und weitere fünf Teilnehmer für das Composers’ Forum im belgischen Mons von 28. bis 30. November mit dem Ensemble Musiques Nouvelles.

Meine beide erfolgreichen Einreichungen werden im November in Brüssel und Mons zu hören sein. Das Forum findet alle zwei Jahre statt und ermöglicht KomponistInnen und HörerInnen den Reading Sessions bei freiem Eintritt beizuwohnen.

[‘tactus] Young Composers’ Forum

Ensemble published by UE Work

Échos éloquents

Échos éloquents | Ensemble Musiques Nouvelles | Jean-Paul Dessy (conductor)

Échos éloquents
for seven players (2016)
version pour Mons for nine players (2019)


Let us try to figure out the shape of an echo: What is said by an echo is what it does not articulate. The information about the echo itself is to be derived from what is swallowed by it or from the way how the reverberation is distorting the original message. An echo itself might be contoured as the phantasmorgia of a reality of which we might only guess its silhouettes by noticing a deviation to a formerly known content.

Échos éloquents tries to portrait this phenomenon in a sonic way. Sounds are being triggered by preceding sounds and sometimes mirrored in a very blurred and hardly recognisable way. Listening to music is similar to a memory game: We strive towards understanding a context by re-cognizing a theme, a chord, a gesture or whatever else. If someone alters the memory cards while we are playing, it starts to get exciting as we might wish to find out, who caused the mess.

The work itself is a kind of an echo to my work miroirs noirs which pictures another way of describing the same phenomenon by a different orchestration. Both work spoon their musical materials—like two sister-volcanos—from one magma chamber.


Was aus dem Echo spricht ist, was es nicht sagt, was es verschluckt, was es zerdehnt, was verhallt. Das Zerrbild einer Wirklichkeit, das verräterisch die Umrisse jener Oreade erahnen lässt, die, längst Stein geworden, alles Gesagte verschlingt um es wieder neu auszusprechen. So vielsagend ihre Laute sind, und zugleich so nichtssa-gend, so sehr hören wir in diesen Klang hinein, um darin irgendetwas zu finden.

Échos éloquents spinnt sich als Dialog zwischen Gesagtem und Zurückgesagtem durch die stumme Kulisse der Zeit fort. Der Sprechende findet im Wider-hall die Resonanz des Findenden, steigert sich in seine aufschaukelnden Worte hinein, um sie am Ende zu verlieren, um sprachlos zurück zu bleiben.

Das Werk selbst ist ein Echo auf mein neues Werk miroirs noirs, welches das dazu parallele Phänomen nicht spiegelnder Spiegel thematisiert. Beide Werke schöpfen ihr Material, wie zwei verschwisterte Vulkane, aus einer Magmakammer.

Flute, clarinet in Bb (also bass clarinet), percussion (1 player), piano, violin, viola, violoncello
Version pour Mons: + trombone and guitar

bass drum, tam tam, xylophone, glockenspiel, vibraphone, gong tuned C, tubular bells

11 minutes

Universal Edition

November 21, 2016 • Graz, Minoritensaal • Schallfeld Ensemble • Leonhard Garms, conductor

November 30, 2019 • Mons, Arsonic • Ensemble Musiques Nouvelles • Jean-Paul Dessy, conductor