Matalon - Rugged, for double orchestra

Duration : 14 minutes

The Orchestre Philharmonique de Radio France, conducted by Mikko Frank, performs "Rugged" pour double orchestre de Martín Matalon. Live concert recorded on 14 September 2018 at the Radio France Auditorium.

In this concert of French composers (more precisely French music), Martín Matalon wholeheartedly deserves his place. Born in Buenos Aires, he chose in 1993 to move to Paris. His musical education is eclectic, with a strong passion for illustrative music. He therefore composed works to accompany historical cinematographic films, including Metropolis by Fritz Lang, and the films Un Chien andalou, L’Âge d’or and Las Hurdes by Luis Buñuel. His opera L’Ombre de Venceslao, with a libretto and stage design by Jorge Lavelli (another Argentinian living in Paris), was first performed in 2016 at the Opéra de Rennes with a resounding success, leading to a tour of eleven French and South American cities.

In an interview, the composer himself discusses his latest work Rugged

"Time and space were two important issues in this work. These two parameters evolve throughout the work's five movements and are continuously reinterpreted. The layout of the orchestra divided into two groups is separated by a third, made up essentially by a horn section, in the centre of the stage and between the two orchestral groups. The horns are, at various moments during the work, a key protagonist.

Spatial treatment is also explored through acoustic properties (range and pitch) particular to each individual instrument in the orchestra. The dialectic of space created between the orchestral line (the use of the orchestra), though compact, is at the heart of the work's structure. Rugged begins with a line (if we can call it that) atomised and fragile, drawn throughout the entire orchestral register and whose only link is a regular and pulsed temporality. This line will undergo various changes in density and crystallisation, leading to an orchestral tutto which, at the end, will suddenly change into a reinterpretation of the opening line but much more fragile, more scattered, more rarefied than the previous iteration, the line now lying on a suspended sound plain...

Each new section of Rugged sweeps away the previous one without ever looking back... Three types of temporal articulation were at the heart of my thoughts: the sound flow (an often chaotic and irregular, yet constant, moving mass), the atomised pulsation (a regular articulation whose timbre, register and instrumentation change at every moment), and suspended time whose evolution of timbre and quality of sound are the main components".

(interview with Martín Matalon by Pierre-René Serna)

Berlioz, Chausson, Ravel, Matalon and Debussy, performed by the Orchestre Philharmonique de Radio France
Full concert
Berlioz, Chausson, Ravel, Matalon and Debussy, performed by the Orchestre Philharmonique de Radio France
Auditorium de la Maison de la Radio, Paris
Martin Matalon
All artists
  • Mikko Franck
    Mikko FranckConductor
  • Orchestre Philharmonique de Radio FranceOrchestra