Delian Suite No 5 – 2009 – Variations concertantes sur le nom de Paul Verlaine

Delian Suite V: Variations Concertantes sur le nom de Paul Verlaine

This year’s Delian Suite No. 5 celebrates the genius of the great French poet Paul-Marie Verlaine (30 March 1844–8 January 1896). By visiting the links listed below, you can listen to electronic realizations of each composer’s musical contribution, read program notes, and view images evoking each movement of this international creative collaboration by members of the Delian Society. You will also find links to the composers enabling you to acquire scores or to learn more about each selection.

The Delian Suite No. 5—Variations concertantes sur le nom de Paul Verlaine pour basson et orchestre à cordes (Concert Variations on the Name of Paul Verlaine for Bassoon and String Orchestra)— was created in collaboration with bassoon virtuoso Franck Leblois (Angoulême, France) and will be premiered by the soloist with the Octava Chamber Orchestra under the baton of Maestro Johan Louwersheimer. This compelling new work prominently features the bassoon in each of the variation movements contributed by twelve composers representing the best in contemporary tonal art music from Australia, Europe, North America, and South America. This exciting new concert work serves as the centerpiece of the Delian Games, held annually in the month of May.

All composer members of the DS, whether professional or amateur, were eligible to participate in this noncompetitive collaborative project. Each movement is scored for bassoon solo and string orchestra [first violins, second violins, violas, cellos, and bass], and quotes a seven-note “Verlaine motto” in one or more significant ways determined by the composer. Each composer was free to shape the motto notes in any manner s/he wished (metrically, rhythmically, in an original harmonic context, with his/her own dynamics, articulations, etc.), and the motto could be transposed after appearing at least once in the chosen tonic key. A brief epigraph from a poem or text by Verlaine that captures the essence of each movement is associated with each score in the series.

The seven-note “motto” is actually a “soggetto cavato” based on the name “Paul Verlaine.” “Soggetto cavato” means that the “subject” was “carved out” of the vowels in this name by equating them to the various solmization syllables (traditionally, ut, re, mi, fa, sol, and la):

“Verlaine” motto illustrated (pdf)

We hope you enjoy our music, and that if you or one of your colleagues or students performs our work, that you will contact us at the e-mail address below with the news. If you are interested in commissioning any of our composers for new works, feel free to contact her/him directly. You may also post a message to him/her by using the Society’s e-mail link at the bottom of the Delian Suite No. 5 web pages.

Special thanks go to Franck Leblois of the Conservatoire Gabriel Fauré for his artistry and support of contemporary tonal art music; Maestro Johan Louwersheimer, Music Director of the Octava Chamber Orchestra; Matthew Weiss, President and Concertmaster of the Octava Chamber Orchestra; the members of the Octava Chamber Orchestra; and to all those who gave so generously of their expertise, musical creativity, and skill to make this world premiere a reality.

Full Score of all movements (pdf)


Joseph Dillon Ford:  Eclatant, le soleil surgit: c’est le matin! – for bassoon and strings      Video

Edward Gold (New York, USA): “Que vienne l’été!” (description page)        (mp3)

Jean Chatillon (Québec, Canada): “Le ciel est, par-dessus le toit ….”) (Included in full score (pdf))

Nancy Bloomer Deussen (California, USA): “Dans un brouillard qui danse” (Country Dance)

Sheila Firestone (Florida, USA): “Son joyeux, importun, d’un clavecin sonore” (pdf)

Joseph Miserendino (Pennsylvania, USA ): “Il pleure dans mon coeur” (pdf)

Warren Park (Minnesota, USA): “De la musique avant toute chose” (a.k.a. “Viva Verlaine”) (pdf)

Ron Brown (Ontario, Canada): “Tout en chantant sur le mode mineur….” (pdf)

Carlos Caicedo-Russi (Carabobo, Venezuela): “Lors sa fille, piquant minois….” (pdf)

David Solomons (Sale, United Kingdom): La Fée Verte (pdf and mp3)             Video     

Robin Escovado (California, USA): “Calmes dans le demi-jour ….” (pdf of parts)

Anthony Linden Jones (New South Wales, Australia): “Les sanglots longs / Des violons / De l’automne” (included in full score (pdf))