giovedì 14 febbraio 2013
Video: Peter Söderberg Karlheinz Stockhausen - Tierkreis (Lute Version), I-VI
Tierkreis, for 12 music boxes or ensemble (1974-1975)
Peter Söderberg & Sven Åberg, lutes
Karlheinz Stockhausen's Tierkreis (Zodiac) is excerpted from his 1975 work Musik im Bauch (Music in the Breast) for six percussionists and music boxes. Musik im Bauch is a musical "fairy tale" with stage action and minimal plot; its nostalgic naivete recalls the theater piece Herbstmusik (1974). In Tierkreis, the twelve signs of the zodiac are represented by melodies (or, more precisely, complex musical formulae expressed in several voices with specified tempos) on one of twelve music boxes. For the instrumental version of the work, Stockhausen made transcriptions of the music box melodies; a characteristic scoring includes clarinet, flute, trumpet, and piano, though any number of similar combinations is allowed.
In the instrumental version(s) of the work, timbral effects, dynamics, and other parameters become part of the larger formula of each zodiac sign's music. The music itself is unexpectedly melodic, tonally centered, and even "pretty" in ways that are unexpected given the composer's earlier music. Stockhausen carefully considered the characteristics of each sign and each month of the year, as well as the personalities of people he knew were born under a particular sign, in composing this work. Tierkreis presages very directly the work with musical and character archetypes Stockhausen eventually undertook in his opera cycle Licht.