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François Bayle
Franck Bedrossian
Thierry Blondeau
Raphaël Cendo
Denis Dufour
Pierre Dutrieu
Luc Ferrari
Pierre Henry
Vincent Laubeuf
Ramon Lazkano
Lin-Ni Liao
José Manuel López López
Paul Méfano
Bernard Parmegiani
Gérard Pesson
Colin Roche
Oriol Saladrigues
Pierre Schaeffer
Davor Vincze
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Luc Ferrari
Ce qu'a vu le Cers
Réflexion sur l'écriture n°3

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« Experimenting with a new simplicity. »
« Expérimentation d'une nouvelle simplicité. »
Luc Ferrari


The Cers is a north wind which blows in the Aude region, often violently, giving the landscape its distinctive character. It probably also shapes the psyche of the locals: spontaneity, gusts of images, rapid speech, a virtuoso way with words, a raving imagination, etc. When you speak of the Cers, you realise what an important part it plays in everyday life, in the organisation of work in the vineyards, in the look of the land.
The specificity and the dynamics of this Occitan land, and my encounter with it, have prompted me to dedicate several works to it. A few musical pieces are directly marked by my visits there, I would even say by my complicity with the place. That is why ‘Ce qu’a vu le Cers’ is first and foremost dedicated to the people who live there, mostly the inhabitants of Tuchan, the village I had in mind when I composed those themes. It is also, of course, dedicated to my musician friends from the Vivant Quartet who live in the area and who do me the pleasure of playing this music, composed for them.

I also like the reference to Debussy, his sensory relationship to reality, in which nature appears through an irrational description. There’s a kinship in the writing which, in his case, has sometimes more to do with transferring improvisation than with an abstract speculation on language. What I mean is that, at last, I understand certain scores by Debussy, they should not be played as “written notes” but as improvisation — as if I were inventing them as I play. Best not project the score into the listening experience, i.e. shove the written score, and the painful bar lines, down the audience’s ears; instead, consider the score as a fleeting manifestation of the imagination.
And it is with this in mind that I recently “composed” the “Reflections on Writing”, which are variations on current experiments. So what I am interested in is subverting writing, in the sense that simplicity is subversive. Experimenting with a new simplicity, no disguise, the doors of spontaneous invention are open. Another complexity can thus appear within the moment.

Regarding the tape, all the natural sounds were recorded in the area; the swifts in Gruissan, the crickets, the night birds and the village bell in Tuchan, the wind blowing through the ruins of a Cathar castle, etc. Except in certain places when the musical sounds come through, the tape bears no relation to the instrumentalists. It creates a surrounding atmosphere, a natural place in which music nestles.

[Luc Ferrari]
Le Cers est un vent du nord qui souffle au pays d'Aude […] me plaît aussi la référence à Debussy […] ce qui m'intéresse est une subversion de l'écriture […] dans le sens où la simplicité est subversive […] expérimentation d'une nouvelle simplicité, ainsi peut apparaître une autre complexité à l'intérieur du moment […]
[Luc Ferrari]


  • Premiered in 1979 at Moderna Museet, Fylkingen (Sweden)

Composer See all

Luc Ferrari
1929 – 2005

Never ceasing to investigate, Luc Ferrari leaves behind a body of work by turns exalting, noble, funny, intimate, and nocturnal. Like a mirror turned toward the Other, it reflects the world and its fantasies.

He had a weakness for women with accents.

Find the near-complete catalogue of his mixed music and sonic pieces at Maison ONA — about 150 works released over time.
1929 – 2005

N’ayant eu de cesse de questionner, Luc Ferrari nous laisse une œuvre tour à tour solaire, généreuse, drôle, intime ou nocturne. Tel un miroir tourné vers l’autre, s’y reflètent le monde et ses fantasmes.

Il avait un petit faible pour les femmes avec un accent.

Retrouvez chez Maison ONA la quasi-intégralité de ses pièces mixtes et sur support — soit environ 150 œuvres progressivement disponibles.