Olivier Messiaen
DATE: 16 March 2018
TIME: 20 h 30 min
LOCATION: Auditorium - Philharmonie 1 (Paris - France)
From canyons to stars 16 March 2018


  • Olivier Messiaen : From Canyons to stars … (for solo piano, horn, xylorimba, glockenspiel and orchestra)

Ensemble intercontemporain
Ensemble of The Lucerne Festival Alumni
Matthias Pintscher, director
Hidéki Nagano, piano
Jean-Christophe Vervoitte, horn
Victor Hanna, xylorimba
Samuel Favre, glockenspiel
Ann Veronica Janssens, visual creation


The first musicians already aspired to their ramages … But no composer has probably pushed the passion of the birds so far as Olivier Messiaen, ornithologist emeritus, who made the raw material of his work.

Commissioned for the US Independence Bicentennial Celebrations, Canyons to Stars is born of the deep impression of the grand landscapes of Utah deserts and canyons on Olivier Messiaen. A hymn to nature, which naturally integrates birds populating these majestic landscapes, while transpiring the religious faith of the composer. This “work of his-color” – the expression is of the synesthet Messiaen himself – called a visual counterpoint. The ensemble intercontemporain turned to the visual artist Ann Veronica Janssens who plunges with delight in this perilous exercise.

Coproduction Ensemble intercontemporain, Lucerne Festival, Paris Philharmonic
With the support of Swiss Re – Lucerne Festival Alumni Partner

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