The Abyss of the birds against the furor of the Apocalypse

The big day of the Portico 2014 ended at twelve o’clock last Saturday with one of the most awe inspiring quotes that are remembered at the Festival. The melancholy and madness gave their hands to each other to receive, most likely, the first performance in the city of the singular Quartet for the End of Time by Oliver Messiaen. The score, written in a German prison camp in Görlitz in 1940, has an extraordinary significance in the evolution of the composer ( and this fact alone explains its role in European music of the twentieth century , being Messiaen one of the most influential creators, also being the best known of all the pieces designed and released amid the horror of the concentration camps. The Artistic Direction of the Festival regained the explanations and texts which the author himself mused aloud about his work some years later. They are associating mystical harmonies with composer’s thoughts and visual synesthesia, who saw colors inspired by a fragment of the Apocalypse with their music to narrate the appearance of the avenging angel coated rainbow, to the sound of the seven trumpets in this supernatural context , the foursome act with one voice in a few moments, for each instrument or group is assigned its own meaning. Juan Carlos Garvayo gave life from the piano to legs described by Angel – Revelation as pillars of fire and represented by Messiaen with huge blocks of repeated chords, José Miguel Gómez the eternity of Christ, considered a long cello weeping, Miguel Borrego to living and risen Jesus who cried out from his passionate violin, while José Luis Estellés transformed his clarinet in the chirping of birds, perhaps the most beloved beings of nature by Messiaen. The author calls the clarinetist on his solo from absolute nothingness and transforms it into a piercing cry before vanishing back into the voice of the birds: rarely an artist achieves that cry is as long, exciting and torn than in tonight’s Pórtico. The performance was poignant and carefully illustrated by the comments of Messiaen read by Camilo Garcia – honest version did full justice to a work that gives meaning to the greatness of the human being in the midst of the greatest miseries.