• Category / Instrument
    Soprano and ensemble
    1(flB).0.1(clB).0 / / perc / hp /
  • Duration
  • Commissioned by
    Ensemble Contrechamps
  • Published
  • Premiere
    Ensemble Contrechamps


Michael Jarrell's works are published by Editions Henry Lemoine :

27, boulevard Beaumarchais
75004 PARIS
Tel. : +33 (0)1 56 68 86 74


Eco IIb


[...] Michael Jarrell also skilfully uses the glittering timbres and harmonic entanglements in Eco II b (a variant of Eco II for voice and ensemble, itself derived from Eco for voice and piano. It eloquently renders the mystical elans of a sonnet by the 16th-century Spanish poet and ecclesiastic Luis de Gongora. The music translates the poem's erratic, desolate spirit and, with its slowed tempo, preserves the secret of this wandering. The beauty of the instrumental correspondences provides Françoise Kubler's voice with an ideal, sensual transparency that evolves, from the second to third strophes, towards a strange, brief spoken and scanned moment. Here, as in the previous piece, the initial equilibrium is re-established in the work's conclusion.

Antoine Gindt,
Extract from CD booklet Eco (Accord)

Descaminado, enfermo, péregrino
en tenebrosa noche, con pie incierto
la confusion pisando del desertio,
voces en vano dio, pasos sin tino.

Repetido latir, si no vecino,
Distincto oyo de can simpre despierto,
Y en pastoral albergue mal cubierto
Piedad hallo, si no hallo camino.

Salio el sol, y entre arminos escondida,
sonolienta beldad con dulce sana
salteo al no bien sano pasajero.

Pagara et hospedaje con la vida,
mas le valiera errar en la montana,
que morir de la suerte que yo muero.

Luis de Gongora,
Sonnet 80
Extract from the collection 13 Sonnets and a fragment, 1594
Editions La Dogana, Geneva

Disoriented, sick pilgrim
In the dark night with an inexpert step,
Pacing the disorder of the desert,
He long wandered and called in vain.

He heard the repeated, if not close by,
barking of a dog whose eye was always open
And beneath a sorry, pastoral cover,
Found pity for lack of a path.

Then came the sun, and veiled with ermine,
Sleepy beauty in tender frenzy
Assailed the ever-weak traveller.

He will pay his board and lodging with his life:
It would have been better to wander in the mountains
Than to die in the way I am dying.

(Translated from the French)


1 CD Accord, Eco
Assonance III - Eco IIb - Aus bebung - Trei II - Essaims-cribles
Ensemble Accroche Note, Jean-Philippe Wurtz

Works index
© Michael Jarrell