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n Tydskrif vir Geesteswetenskappe - Mistieke klankwêrelde in Stefans Grové se musiek met spesifieke verwysing na sy Towermusiek vir klavier

Volume 53 Number 2
  • ISSN : 0041-4751

Abstract


Stefans Grové's compositional ideas often come to him in dreams. This article explores the processes inherent in the creation, re-creation by the performer, and appreciation of Grové's unique soundscapes, where the silences between the notes and the overtones are often as important as the dissonances - which he describes as "colourful harmonies" - themselves.
Grové's music is often regarded as relatively inaccessible and elusive. This article explores how it can be better understood if the listener can develop the ability to appreciate its programmatic nature, to draw on strong visual imagination when "translating" sound into images, and to approach his music with openness to non-traditional structures and harmonies. Only by these means can access be gained to the richness of the mystical soundscapes and musical imagery
If properly understood, the complexities and dynamics inherent in the creation of Grové's music can be translated effectively by the performer into the soundscapes that originated in the composer's imagination. This entails a process of "re-creation" by the performer.
The author first encountered Grové as a lecturer in her class at the University of Pretoria, and she later, as a performer and exponent of his works, received generous guidance from the composer himself. The article is interspersed with four Vignettes depicting the circumstances at the time. As in Grové's own use of chain form, the Vignettes look first forward and then back in chronological time. Essential elements in the performance of his music, as illustrated throughout in the comparison of these works, include the exquisite control of sound and overtones, the ability to create a rich variety of timbres, the dramatic use of silence, a secure sense of rhythm and fluency in articulation.
The author first encountered Grové as a lecturer in her class at the University of Pretoria, and she later, as a performer and exponent of his works, received generous guidance from the composer himself. The article is interspersed with four Vignettes depicting the circumstances at the time. As in Grové's own use of chain form, the Vignettes look first forward and then back in chronological time. Essential elements in the performance of his music, as illustrated throughout in the comparison of these works, include the exquisite control of sound and overtones, the ability to create a rich variety of timbres, the dramatic use of silence, a secure sense of rhythm and fluency in articulation.
The processes of "creation", "re-creation" and "appreciation" all entail application of the mind, not least on the part of the listener. The mystical in Grové's music can be appreciated through a thorough understanding of the programme which inspired any given creation, keeping track of the permutations of the original germ cells throughout a work, and imagining what can happen but has not necessarily happened. In Strange valley of the mists, according to Grové himself, the imagination must lead to what the listener thinks is there, and not to what he or she sees.
Grové draws inspiration from indigenous African music and cultures, and especially from Venda legends. Many scholars and performers regard Stefans Grové as one of the most important composers in Africa. He has an unlimited musical imagination with regard to sources from which he chooses to draw upon for inspiration, his musical language and the creation of unconventional sounds and structures. By transcending our traditional way of listening to music, we can gain access to his special soundscapes and unique musical idiom.

Nuwe idees vir komposisies kom dikwels in drome na die komponis Stefans Grové. Hierdie artikel ontgin die prosesse wat inherent is aan die skep, herskep en waardering van Grové se unieke klankwêrelde, waar die stiltes tussen die note, asook die botone, dikwels net so belangrik soos die dissonante self is – wat hy "kleurvolle harmonieë" noem. Dié musiek van Grové verg van die luisteraar 'n begrip van die programmatiese aard daarvan, sowel as ’n sterk visuele verbeelding, die vermoë om klank in beelde te kan “vertaal” en 'n ontvanklikheid vir nietradisionele strukture en harmonieë. Die musikale styl van hierdie 90-jarige komponis het 'n geleidelike transformasie gedurende sy loopbaan ondergaan, van musiek wat in neoklassieke, pressionistiese en ekspressionistiese style van die Westerse tradisie ingebed is, tot die post-1984 musiek wat Afrika verklank. Sy Towermusiek vir klavier vertoon sterk ooreenkomste met Gaspard de la nuit van Maurice Ravel - albei is impressionistiese, programmatiese werke, en albei bevat sterk mistieke elemente. Hy put inspirasie uit Afrika-kulture, -melodieë, en -ritmiek, en veral uit Venda-legendes, maar soos wat duidelik word in hierdie artikel, strek sy musikale verbeelding dan ook vanaf dit wat hy by die huis hoor tot ver anderkant ons landsgrense. Deur ons tradisionele usiekbeluistering te oorskry kan ons ook toegang kry tot Grové se besonderse klankwêrelde.

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/content/akgees/53/2/EJC137337
2013-06-01
2019-08-21

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