Sylvia Nopper / Kai Wessel / Olivier Darbellay / Matthias Würsch / Swiss Chamber Soloists HEINZ HOLLIGER Induuchlen

Issued simultaneously with “Ich hatte viel Bekümmernis” (ECM 2229), his dazzling account of Bach’s music for oboe, “Induulchen” puts the focus upon Heinz Holliger as composer of idiosyncratic genius, defining a sound-world of his own. Here, Holliger’s creativity draws inspiration from arcane Swiss sources, setting the poetry of Anna Maria Bacher who writes in the endangered idiom of “Pummattertisch”, and verse by the late Albert Streich, who wrote in Brienz-German. As conductor Holliger draws committed performances from a cast of gifted chamber musicians and singers Sylvia Nopper and Kai Wessel. The outcome is intriguing, mysterious and often strangely beautiful.
Holliger has described Anna Maria Bacher’s poetry as “a force of nature, like an avalanche or a thunderstorm”. It has inspired one of Holliger’s most complex works of verbal art. In the liner notes Michael Kunkel writes that it is near-impossible to describe the cycle Puneigä sequentially: “Multiple sound-worlds coalesce in a single work distinctly rich in connections, contrasts and perspectives that is nonetheless comprised of a number of short, atmospherically and stylistically similar songs and interludes (…)
“New Music’s literary canon revolves around a relatively small selection of names: Hölderlin, Beckett, Celan, Mandelstam, Robert Walser, Nelly Sachs... For Holliger, not entirely uninvolved in the establishment of this canon, it is increasingly difficult to continue working with a body of literature that has worn thin in numerous musical reworkings. In this context, his long-standing penchant for dialects and local idioms, preferably of a Swiss nature, becomes very topical indeed: The poetry of Anna Maria Bacher and Bernadette Lerjen-Sarbach (Gränzä, Borders) or the legends of the Upper Valais (Alb-Chehr) were, from a composer’s point of view, still untouched and had, for Holliger, similar significance as art forms outside the realm of high culture as for his teacher Sándor Veress, for Anton Webern (op. 17) or Béla Bartók (Cantata profana). And in Induuchlen (Darkening), Albert Streich’s Brienz-German verses provide even more opportunity to dip into Bartók’s ‘pure fountain.’”

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