La commerelle

Score Excerpt


For oboe player (performer) and performer behind a chalk board, 4′.
Premiere on 24 and 25 January 2015 at the Dampfzentrale in Bern.

The title of the piece comes from Walter Benjamin’s eponymous text in German, “die Mummerehlen,” taken from “Berliner Kindheit um neunzehnhundert.” A chalk board enters the stage pulled by a hidden performer. A felt pen inserted in the bell of the instrument allows the oboist to write the following expressions in a given rhythm, while playing through patterns of scales: “coquille âge,” “à part te ment,” and “MAIS SON.” The “sound” (SON) thus contrasts with objects that “lie” such as the apartment or the chalk board. The feeling described by Benjamin of being alienated by the surrounding objects is rendered here by the person hidden behind the painting, whose legs alone exceed by imitating the movements of the oboist.