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Messiaen’s song cycles Trois Mélodies (1930) and Harawi (1945) were both inspired by the loss of a loved one.
Mélodies are a memorial to his mother who had died three years previously, and Harawi was written shortly after his wife Claire Delbos had begun to suffer from the long illness that would ultimately lead to her death.
But far from resorting to misery, the shimmering beauty of Messiaen’s music leaves the listener with a sense of hope and transcendence.
Olivier Messiaen: 3 Melodies
No. 1. Pourquoi?
No. 2. Le sourire
No. 3. La fiancee perdue
Olivier Messiaen: Harawi
No. 1. La ville qui dormait, toi
No. 2. Bonjour toi, colombe verte
No. 3. Montagnes
No. 4. Doundou tchil
No. 5. L'amour de Piroutcha
No. 6. Repetition planetaire
No. 7. Adieu
No. 8. Syllabes
No. 9. L'escalier redit, gestes de soleil
No. 10. Amour oiseau d'etoile
No. 11. Katchikatchi les etoiles
No. 12. Dans le noir
“Hetna Regitze Bruun and Kristoffer Hyldig prove to be fine advocates of Messiaen's music: Hyldig displays a sure touch and a keen sense of colour, while Bruun has the range of expression and the vocal clout to convey both the radiant and the unsettling aspects of Messiaen's fevered imagination.”
“The first thing to be said about Danish soprano Hetna Regitza Bruun is that she comes far closer to Messiaen's requested grand soprano dramatique than most of her rivals on record...Youthfulness is also a rare asset...Excellent French...allows the music to do the talking”
“Hetna Regitze Bruun’s voice is light and youthful-sounding, and Kristoffer Hyldig is a sensitive and flexible accompanist.”