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Poème du Feu

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Ida Gotkovsky

Ida Gotkovsky


General Info

Year: 1978
Duration: c. 13:00
Difficulty: VI (see Ratings for explanation)
Publisher: Molenaar Music
Cost: €329.98


Movements

1. Majestuoso - 6:45
2. Prestissimo - 6:35


Instrumentation

Full Score
Piccolo
Flute I-II
Oboe I-II
English Horn
Bassoon I-II
Eb Soprano Clarinet
Bb Soprano Clarinet I-II-III
Eb Alto Clarinet (ad. lib)
Bb Bass Clarinet I-II
Eb Contrabass Clarinet
Alto Saxophone I-II
Tenor Saxophone
Baritone Saxophone
Trumpet (in Bb/C) I-II-III
Horn in F I-II-III-IV
Trombone I-II-III-IV
Baritone/Euphonium I-II-III
Tuba
Timpani
Percussion (3 players), including:

  • Cymbals
  • Snare Drum
  • Bass Drum
  • Castanets
  • Celesta
  • Xylophone


Errata

Lower brass, movement I, bar 7, second beat rhythm is written as dotted-eighth-sixteenth. It should be two eighth notes.


Program Notes

Ever since the beginning of man, Fire has been particularly revered. Legends on its origin abound, each one conferring upon it a sacred feature; legends making of Fire a link between Creature and his Creator.

Thus the Celtic tradition brings us a myth close to Zarathustra's: During the ceremonies heralding in the new-year, men would light two hearths. The first one which had been watched and honoured all the year round would be coming to its end, while the second, according to the memorial and magic process composed by the two celestial and earthly elements, gave birth to the new Fire.

When the two glowing furnaces were blazing in all their splendour, the entire village, men, flocks and herds, in a long procession passed between the two Fires: The two movements of the poem. Everyone rejoiced to have mastered this divine gift.

This vision has inspired the composer. Poème du Feu is an original work for large wind orchestra. It is composed then of two movements.

The first movement -- Maestoso -- is a Fire of gigantic proportions, the Spring of life which makes us relive the first moments of creation.

The second movement -- Prestissimo -- being at the heart of human achievement, is a power of revelation, an impetuous power which raises man to level of demiurge and which finishes in the Fire apotheosis and, in this way, granting Prometheus's wish.

- Program Note by composer


Fire is a commonality of technological advancement throughout the earliest human societies. Legends on its origin abound, each one conferring a sacred feature; fire is a link between Creature and his Creator. Culture’s curiosity of fire inspired Ida Gotokovski’s Poème du Feu. She is particularly fascinated by the Celtic myth of Zarathustra. During the ceremonies heralding in the new year, men would light two hearths. The first one, which had been watched and honored all year, would be coming to its end, while the second gave birth to the new year.

The first movement -- Maestoso -- is a Fire of gigantic proportions, the Spring of life which makes us relive the first moments of creation. The second movement -- Prestissimo -- being at the heart of human achievement, is a power of revelation, an impetuous power which raises man to the level their creator (Gotovsky, 1978).

Albert Fasce, head of the musical department of the French Army writes,

“The Poème du Feu by Madame Ida Gotkovski is one of the most successful, original compositions for symphonic band in recent years. I have had to conduct this work at concerts with different orchestras, and in particular at Budapest, and each performance was greeted by enthusiastic ovations. Moreover, it is quite rare in contemporary music to achieve, at the same time, the satisfaction of the musicians and success with the public. This magnificent work is written

remarkably for wind instruments. There is no major technical difficulty, but the character of this work calls for meticulous placing and a certain orchestral glow”.

- Program Note from The Hartt Wind Ensemble concert program, 27 September 2019


Commercial Discography

Audio CD: Symphonic Band of the Belgian Guides (Norbert Nozy, conductor)


State Ratings

None discovered thus far.


Performances

To submit a performance please join The Wind Repertory Project

  • University of Delaware (Newark) Wind Ensemble (Lauren Reynolds, conductor) – 22 February 2020 (CBDNA 2020 Eastern Division Conference, Philadelphia, Penn.)
  • University of Delaware (Newark) Wind Ensemble (Lauren Reynolds, conductor) – 5 December 2019
  • The Hartt Wind Ensemble (West Hartford, Conn.) (James Jackson, conductor) – 27 September 2019
  • University of Michigan (Ann Arbor) Symphony Band (Michael Haithcock, conductor) – 15 March 2019
  • University of California (Berkeley) Wind Ensemble (Matthew Sadowski, conductor) - 28 October 2018
  • University of Georgia (Athens) Hodgson Wind Ensemble (Cynthia Johnston Turner, conductor) – 1 September 2017
  • Illinois State University (Normal) Wind Symphony (Martin H. Seggelke, conductor) - 28 September 2014
  • San Francisco Wind Ensemble (Martin H. Seggelke, conductor) - 8 February 2014


Works for Winds by this Composer


Resources