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Composed in , Edgard Varèse’s Ionisation is the first piece of Western classical music to be scored for an ensemble comprised solely of. Compared to those monuments, the French-American composer Edgard Varèse’s “Ionisation” barely amounts to a flyspeck. The work’s Sheet Music – £ – Edgard Varèse – Ionisation (Percussion Ensemble).

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Ionisation proceeds as a number of miniature sections, each with a different textural character.

He ionisatioh settled in the United States in A Sketch of the Man and His Music”. Toward the end of the nineteenth ionisatio, the percussion section was expected to provide colour as well. Retrieved from ” https: The next section begins at 2: This music is at once expansive and intimate, ugly and irresistibly beautiful: Well, that would count as part of the larger piece, rather than a stand-alone piece in and of itself.

Pierre Grondines is a musicologist and choral conductor.

Ionisation, Edgard Varèse | Articulate Silences

Some dozen of his compositions are groundbreaking works, among them Ionizationthe first score in western music composed for percussion ensemble. One critic described the performance as “a sock in the jaw. Indefinite pitch Nearly all the percussion instruments used in Ionization generate indefinite pitch, so that most of their vibrations can’t be clearly identified as a D or a G, for ionieation. You are commenting using your Twitter account.


Ionisation (Varèse) – Wikipedia

Below is a recording of Ionisation followed by a brief listening guide. To find out more, including how to control cookies, see here: A new world of sound would soon open for percussion instruments. As the composer later described, “I was not influenced by composers as much as by natural objects and physical phenomena.

The highly refined, luxuriant music of composers such as Mahler, Strauss, Debussy, and Ravel was enriched by the use of celesta, glockenspiel, tam-tam, rattle, and xylophone. Yet what is striking about this piece of music is the degree of sensitivity with which the composer controls the instrumental timbres, achieving an understated grace and eloquence of expression which reaches far beyond more common functional uses of percussion.

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: It was among the first concert hall compositions for percussion ensemble alone, although Alexander Tcherepnin had composed an entire movement for percussion alone in his Symphony No.

Ionisation (Varèse, Edgard)

Three other instruments appear only in the last bars of the work: By continuing to use this website, you agree to their use. It demonstrated how powerfully a genuine musical idea can be expressed in new sounds.

April 30, at Ionisation features the expansion and variation of rhythmic cellsand the title refers to the ionization of molecules. Journal of Music Theory. From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia.


Giant strides in percussion Beginning inat a time when percussion ionieation in the orchestra experienced unprecedented development, composers began using these instruments in response to influences as diverse as Slavic folklore or the freewheeling use of the drum set in ragtime groups.

Alles rund um Kunst – Seite 5 says: The radical, innovative nature of the work was such that the New York Philharmonic percussionists who were approached to perform Ionization soon proved unable to cope with the work, and typesetters had to be called in to complete the task!

The Gramophone Shop Encyclopedia. Email required Address never made public. The rhythms of Ionization refer to no folkloric or exotic source and are intended to be heard as defining trajectories, masses, and tone-clusters of various densities.

Ionisation (Percussion Ensemble)

Avant-gardeThomas May. In opera or program i. La Scena Musicale – Vol. April 26, at 9: Frank Zappa often claimed that Ionisation inspired him to pursue a career in music. Views Read Edit View history. Having moved to America at the age of 32, the French-born composer was deeply affected vardse the aural experience of living in urban New York.