A multinational quartet performs French music written in wartime.
'Debussy, Ravel and Messiaen bring the wonderful colours of their music to life in completely different ways, but they all found inspiration in nature and have common impressionistic textures in their music,' Danish clarinettist Mathias Kjøller explains, on the choice of repertoire.
Ravel and Messiaen wrote against a backdrop of war. Ravel, on completing his Piano Trio, enlisted to fight in World War I. The subsequent outbreak of World War II saw Messiaen enlisting for the same French Army. Quartet for the End of Time was written while Messiaen was a prisoner of war in a Nazi concentration camp. The unusual combination of piano, clarinet, violin and cello reflects the players available to him.
On 15 January 1941 Messiaen premiered the piece with three fellow prisoners for an audience of guards, other prisoners and camp hospital patients. He later said of its reception: 'Never before have I been listened to with such attention and understanding.'
Mathias Kjøller clarinet
Chloe Hanslip violin
Andreas Brantelid cello
Mariana Shirinyan piano
CLAUDE DEBUSSY (1862–1918)
MAURICE RAVEL (1875–1937)
Piano Trio in A minor
OLIVIER MESSIAEN (1908–1992)
Quartet for the End of Time
Introduction (in Norwegian) by Magnus Andersson at 18:55