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History regards 20th-century French composers as a hotbed of innovation in color, timbre, and texture. But of that group, Andre Jolivet may be best remembered as a nonconformist--one who synthesized musical styles in order to communicate his deeply held spiritual beliefs. Born to artistic parents father a painter, mother a pianist , Jolivet was exposed to the arts at an early age. He began piano lessons with his mother at age 4, posed for artist Poulbon, and attended performances.
Greatly inspired at age 13 by a performance at the Comedie-Francaise, he created his first work, Romance barbare, comprised of a paper theatre complete with sets, characters, original poetry, dialogue, and music. He later became musical director for the Comedie-Francaise, from until At 14, the cello replaced the piano in his studies, and he became involved in the theater directing plays.
Thus Jolivet's artistic foundation was laid; yet his family exerted equally strong influences on him artistically. The Jolivets made frequent visits to Andre's maternal uncle, an administrator in the French African colonies and collector of objects from ancient cultures.
Stories were invariably told of tribal rituals and legends of magic-making, which caught the interest of the young Jolivet. This experience would prove to have a lasting effect on Jolivet and his works. Jolivet's parents were adamant that he become a teacher, a vocation they believed had more job security than music. Respecting his parents wishes, he became certified to teach and taught in the Paris primary schools--just long enough to gain financial independence to enable him to pursue his true love: music.
Music lessons began in earnest in with studies in harmony and counterpoint with Paul Le Flem, director of Chanteurs de St. Through Le Flem, Jolivet was introduced to a number of musicians and composers who influenced his compositional style. Most notable of these was Edgard Varese, who quickly became Jolivet's teacher and spiritual mentor.
Over the next four years , Jolivet composed no works for him; rather, he assisted on Varese's research of sound masses and innovative instrumentation. When, in , Varese returned to the U.
He was consoled by six objects Varese had given him before departing. Jolivet placed them on his piano, where they are said to have remained for the rest of his life.
Jolivet met composer Oliver Messaien in and, together with composers Daniel Lesur and Yves Baudrier, formed the group La Jeune France, whose goal was to promote a new, more human expression of music, one reflecting more spiritual and religious values than were being heard at the time. These composers enjoyed a short period of success, which ended due to mandatory military service in World War II Andre Jolivet's Cinq Incantations and asceses: theatre, magic, and spiritual and religious ritual deeply influenced the writing of French composer Andre Jolivet; these elements are especially apparent in the works explored here.
Author: Sharon Winton. Date: Winter From: Flutist Quarterly. Publisher: National Flute Association, Inc. Document Type: Critical essay. Length: 3, words. Early Life and Influences Born to artistic parents father a painter, mother a pianist , Jolivet was exposed to the arts at an early age.
Composed during summer , Cinq Access from your library This is a preview. Get the full text through your school or public library. Source Citation Winton, Sharon. Accessed 4 June
Jolivet, A. - Ascèses
Jolivet, A :: Asceses