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Many consider Claude Vivier the greatest composer Canada has yet produced. György Ligeti once called him 'the finest French composer of his generation'. A pupil under Gilles Tremblay and Karlheinz Stockhausen, he soon created his own dazzling vocal and orchestral language, profoundly marked by his travels to the Far East. The interweaving of his personal and professional life, of the real and the imaginary, reveals a compelling global awareness, deep human compassion and a universal quest for ultimate enlightenment. Vivier himself pursued this journey of discovery, until his tragic murder in Paris at the age of thirty-four.
The two parts of Rêves d’un Marco Polo are like shadow and light, forming a dreamlike ritualistic experience and encompassing stage productions of his finest compositions. Pierre Audi's superb and moving staging is complemented by refined, passionate musical direction from Reinbert de Leeuw, leading the soloists, the Asko Ensemble and the Schönberg Ensemble to great heights.

Susan Narucki, Lani Poulson, Claron McFadden, Kathryn Harries, Karl Daymond, Johan Leysen
Asko Ensemble / Schönberg Ensemble / Reinbert de Leeuw
Stage Director Pierre Audi

Repertoire The ultimate collection of Vivier’s mature works in a dramatic and spellbinding staging featuring:
Kopernikus, opéra rituel de mort in two parts (1980)
In this ‘mystic tale’ the central character Agni calls on historical and mythical figures: Lewis Carroll, Merlin, a witch, the Queen of the Night, a blind prophet, an old monk, Tristan, Isolde, Mozart, the Lord of the Waters, Kopernikus and his mother
Marco Polo An ‘opéra fleuve’: a series of tableaux about Marco Polo, some vocal, others instrumental:
Prologue pour un Marco Polo ‘Marco Polo’s Last Will and Testament – Vision of Zipangu’ (1981)
Shiraz ‘A First Glimpse of the Adventure’ (1977)
Lonely Child ‘The Youth of Marco Polo’ (1980)
Zipangu The symbol of immeasurable inner treasures that are so difficult to accumulate (1980)
Wo bist du Licht! A meditation about human suffering (1981)
Glaubst du an die Unsterblichkeit der Seele Do you believe in the immortality of the soul (1983 - unfinished)

Claude Vivier - a spellbinding and insightful 60-minute documentary by Cherry Duyns, from his acclaimed contemporary composer portrait series, on the life and work of Claude Vivier, including rare footage, interviews with conductor Reinbert de Leeuw and people close to Vivier and his music

Introductions to the work by Pierre Audi and Reinbert de Leeuw

Awards & Accolades:
Diamant d'Opéra Magazine (March 2006)

FORMAT: All Formats
REGIONS: All Regions
LENGTH: 260 Mins
RELEASED: 03/01/2006

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