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Théo Schmitt

Théo Schmitt

General Info

Year: 2017 / 2018
Duration: c. 13:00
Difficulty: IV+ (see Ratings for explanation)
Publisher: Woodbrass Music
Cost: Score and Parts (print) - CHF 256.00


Full Score
C Piccolo
Flute I-II
Bassoon (also uses paper)
B-flat Soprano Clarinet I-II-III
B-flat Bass Clarinet
E-flat Alto Saxophone I-II
B-flat Tenor Saxophone
E-flat Baritone Saxophone
B-flat Trumpet I-II-III
Horn in F I-II-III-IV
Trombone I-II (both also uses paper)
Bass Trombone (also uses paper)
Euphonium I-II (both also uses paper)
Tuba (also uses paper)
Harp (optional)
Timpani (with large suspended cymbal placed on head)
Percussion I-II-III, including:

  • Bass Drum (concert)
  • Crash Cymbals (concert)
  • Drumset
    • Bass Drum (pedal)
    • Crash Cymbal (suspended)
    • Hi-hat
    • Snare Drum
    • Tom-toms (2: high and low)
  • Glockenspiel (extended high range required (high D6))
  • Suspended Cymbal
  • Tam-tam
  • Triangles (3: small, medium and large)
  • Vibraphone (with motor)
  • Vibraslap
  • Whip
  • Wind Chimes
  • Xylophone (3.5 octaves)

Players singing (SATB)

Players rustling paper


None discovered thus far.

Program Notes

The first scene tells how Death (personified), who fell in love with a young musician, slowly approaches him to sing about his love of him. Cradled by this song, the heart of the musician falls asleep and Death, embracing his beloved, dives back into his world with him. The second scene then describes the dreams and nightmares of the musician in the kingdom of death. Shadows dance frantically around him as the echoes of his beats still echo of heart. The dancing and the nightmares intensify until complete engulfment. Then the shadows disappear, leaving the musician and Death alone. During the third scene, the musician sings in turn. He sings to Death his love for life and begs him to let him go back to the world of the living. Touched by his song, and out of love for him, Death loosens his grip and lets him go, reluctantly. Finally, the fourth scene relates the slow ascent of the musician towards life. Shadows creep back and the echoes of his heart are heard again. The hymn to life then arises in an explosion of light, guiding the musician towards the resurrection. The song of Death, transformed into the song of life, sounded one last time, awakening the musician's heart.

Although the resurrection is undeniably a religious concept, or more broadly spiritual, this piece does not relate to any specific religion. His story draws more on the collective imagination than in a sacred text. This story, and the music that results from it, are, therefore, not part of a religious thought but rather in a philosophical reflection. Indeed, this piece is a metaphor for the concept of the human being having always had special relationships, even intimate with death. This can be seen by the omnipresence of death in different civilizations, the diversity of funeral rites, but especially by the ability of the human being to spread death around him. Faced with this terrible observation, music, and art in general, is emerging as a means of redemption from our attraction to death. In a way, music elevates the human being beyond death.

- Program Note by composer (rendered from the French by Google Translate)

Commissioned by the Société Cantonale des Musiques Vaudoises for the 28th music festival in the Vallée de Joux.

- Program Note from score (rendered from the French by Google Translate)


State Ratings

None discovered thus far.


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Works for Winds by This Composer