Floating through colors and over infinite surfaces

Ligeti's "Lontano" is a captivating sound experiment. © Charles Thibo
Ligeti’s “Lontano” is a captivating sound experiment. © Charles Thibo

Can you imagine a surface made of sound? Let’s try this: Imagine a black surface, indefinitely long, extending into space. Okay? Now, we move on: The surface is not just black, but lined with glowing pink, yellow, green and blue lines, running parallel to each other. Still with me? Now the lines starts vibrating, like strings on a guitar or a violin. Got it? Brilliant. Now you are ready for “Lontano” – a vibrating piece written by György Ligeti in 1967 and illustrating what the representatives of the “Neue Musik” define as Klangflächen and Klangfarben* – sound surfaces and sound colors.

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The Communists didn’t like funky sound experiments

Ligeti's "Musica Ricercata" is about contrasts. © Charles Thibo
Ligeti’s “Musica Ricercata” is about contrasts. © Charles Thibo

The Communist Party did not welcome revolutions that it had not initiated itself. György Ligeti was not welcome, nor was his music. Not in Hungary, when it was ruled by the Communist Party. But the Communist world broke apart and Ligeti’s music stays on. He is certainly one of the greatest composers of classical music of the 20th century. Et pour cause, as they say in France.

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Sound the trumpet: Here comes 007!

Tamas Palfalvi - a promising trumpeter from Hungary. © Charles Thibo
Tamas Palfalvi – a promising trumpeter from Hungary. © Charles Thibo

How well do you know James Bond? He drinks vodka martini, likes woman, fast cars and oysters. How about music? Ian Fleming is silent about it, and as far as I remember, music does not play a major role in the plot of any James Bond movie, even though most of them have fantastic sound tracks. So what? Well, there is that young Hungarian trumpeter Tamas Palfalvi, who has just released his first album “Agitato”.  It features Laszlo Dubrovay’s Trumpet Concerto No. 3 which would have made a great sound track for “Spectre”, the new Bond movie released today. So check it out!

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