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lundi 12 décembre 2016

Glass : GlassWorlds Vol. 5 reviews



David Denton (David's Review Corner, October 2016)

The fifth volume in the complete piano works of Philip Glass contains two of his most extended works in the genre, Mad Rush and the highly complex 600 Lines. Though he distanced himself from Minimalism, Mad Rush is surely one of the perfect examples of that movement, the score almost of a mystic quality at odds with its title. It is also a score that remains in the memory, even to an extent that you cannot loosen yourself from it, but continue to hear it for days afterwards. Originally an organ piece, it was later given its name Mad Dash when adapted for a piano accompaniment used by a modern ballet company. The work’s twenty minutes is dwarfed by 600 Lines that plays for twice that length and was originally composed for the Philip Glass Ensemble in 1967, and was only many years later adapted for solo piano. Shaped as a restless toccata whose subtle shifts around a musical kernel of five notes is as taxing on the performer as on the listener, the changes of rhythm as complex as the changes of the note patterns. As a Glass enthusiast, I confess I find its length something I would not often return to, despite the advocacy of the pianist, Nicolas Horvath, in this premiere recording. Two short pieces revisits his Metamorphosis Two—maybe you will spot the changes from the version on volume three of this series—and a solo piano arrangement of Paul Simon’s lush harmonies in The Sound of Silence. Horvath is the unfailingly promoter of Glass, and in very good sound quality. © 2016 David’s Review Corner



Jasemin Khaleli (Magazin Klassik-8 december 2016) Zauberwort Entschleunigung

Interpretation: **** Klangqualität: **** Repertoirewert: **** Booklet: ***


Mit durchaus meditativen Qualitäten begeistern Nicolas Horvaths präzise und fein gedeutete Glass-Interpretationen.

Nicolas Horvath scheint ein Faible für Vollständigkeit sowie interpretatorische und physische Herausforderungen zu haben. ‚Quält‘ er sich beispielsweise in einer 48 Stunden-Version mit Erik Saties 'Vexations' oder gibt alle 'Nocturnes' von Frédéric Chopin an einem Abend zum Besten, füllen des Öfteren auch Philip Glass‘ Stücke das Konzertprogramm. Sie sind bei Horvath dabei in besten sowie in festen Pianistenhänden, würdigte er in den vier bislang im Hause Grand Piano veröffentlichten Platten (‚Glassworlds‘ 1-4) den bedeutenden Minimalisten, Opern- und Filmmusikkomponisten. Gebündelt werden die Stücke dabei mehr unter dem konzeptionellen Gesichtspunkt spannungsgenerierender Variabilität als chronologischer Geradlinigkeit und so sollen nun ‚nach Beginn, Virtuosität, Verwandlung und Liebe‘ (so Nicolas Horvath im Booklet) die ‚spirituellen Kompositionen‘ in ihrer Raffinesse und ihrem Nuancenreichtum zum (Er-)Leuchten gebracht werden.

Wie ihre Vorgänger enthält auch diese Glass-Welt Weltersteinspielungen: Im Mittelpunkt stehen die beiden großangelegten Stücke 'Mad Rush' und das ‚Übungsstück‘ '600 Lines', das, bereits 1967 für das Philip Glass Ensemble komponiert, in der Version für Klavier erstmals auf Tonträgern festgehalten ist. Ebenso betrifft das die beiden kurzen, den Hauptwerken angehängten Stücke, die jüngste Version des zweiten Satzesaus dem Klavierwerk 'Metamorphosis' und die Transkription des Songs 'Sound of Silence' von Paul Simon.

Für 'Mad Rush' (1979), ursprünglich für Orgel, sind klangliche Kontraste charakteristisch: Atmosphärische, träumerisch-friedvolle Klangflüsse brechen fast schmerzlich in unnachgiebige Sechzehntel-Arpeggien und hämmernde Tonrepetitionen aus – ein Hörerlebnis, zu dem der perkussive und glasklare Anschlag des Klaviers sicherlich seinen Teil beiträgt. Aber weit mehr als das Kräftemessen ruhiger und rasanter Passagen ist 'Mad Rush' eine dramatische Erzählung, in beinah versteckter Sonatenform werden Klanggebilde exponiert, überlagert, aufgepeitscht, aufgelöst und verklingen schließlich im Nirgendwo. Angelegt ist hier bereits die melancholische, über eine kreisende Bassstimme geführte Linie aus 'Metamorphosis Two', sodass sich die Neufassung in logischer Konsequenz anschließt.

Psychedelischer Schwerelosigkeit wird der Zuhörer in '600 Lines' jäh entrissen. Die mit über 40 Minuten Dauer schier endlose monodische Verkettung der fünf Töne C, D, E, F, G und die dominanten Quartsprünge haben etwas Radikales und Ungehörtes von karikierend fröhlicher Einfachheit an sich. Der Eindruck einer beliebig erweiter- und beendbaren, den Gesetzmäßigkeiten von Zeit völlig lossagenden Kombination trägt eindeutig die Handschrift des Minimalisten und führt ein fortan etabliertes Organisationsprinzip vor Augen, das seinen Anfang von Glass‘ Kontakt mit indischer Musik nahm. Melodisch wieder versöhnlicher rundet dann Glass‘ nur einmal (zur Verleihung des Gershwin Prize an Paul Simon im Jahr 2007) vorgetragene Popsong-Bearbeitung die Einspielung ab und bewegt sich mit den überlagerten Zweier- und Dreierrhythmen wieder auf den Ausgangspunkt des Programms zu.

Glass‘ Kunstgriff sind kaum merkliche Veränderungen in einem Kreislauf der Wiederkehr, die Horvath mit feinem Gespür für packende Spannungsbögen ausgestaltet. Aus Reduktion und vermeintlicher Statik entstehen hier Stimmungsbilder, die mit großer Sensibilität und Ernsthaftigkeit ein ganzes Spektrum an Einfärbungen offenbaren – und eine Musik, die von ihren bereitwilligen Zuhörern erlebt werden will und ihnen den Freiraum gibt, bei sich selbst zu verweilen.



Klaus Heymann (October 2016 - KLAUS HEYMANN REKOMMENDERAR!)

This fifth volume in our ongoing cycle contains some rare treats for Philip Glass fans, not least in the first recording on solo piano of his 600 Lines (a hypnotic toccata reflecting the influence of Ravi Shankar) and the première on disc of Metamorphosis 2. The vivid contrasts of Mad Rush and the composer’s sole example of an arrangement (Paul Simon’s The Sound of Silence) complete the programme. Pianist Nicolas Horvath’s previous releases in the set have attracted many plaudits



Infodad (1st December 2017 - transcentury blogspot) confirm Nicolas Horvath as a first-rate interpreter of this material +++

The value of hearing Philip Glass’s music remains very much a matter of personal opinion. The continuing Grand Piano releases called Glassworlds do nothing to make Glass’s approach more congenial – or less – but they certainly confirm Nicolas Horvath as a first-rate interpreter of this material. The music itself, though, remains distinctly unidimensional, its unending repetitiveness either haunting or soporific, depending on each listener’s viewpoint. All the works on the latest Glassworks release are world première recordings, except for Mad Rush, but there is nothing particularly revelatory here. Glass sounds like Glass – and nowadays like a whole host of other composers who believe that hypnotic repetition bordering on obsessiveness is a strong foundation for audience communication. Mad Rush, for example, tries to contrast peacefulness with drama, but it is the work’s lulling aspects that come across most strongly. It is in the nature of Glass’s music that Metamorphosis Two draws from the same wellspring of quiet repetitiveness, and although there is indeed something metamorphosing here, what changes does so with extreme gradualness. As for 600 Lines, much of it sounds like the noise made by old-fashioned piano tuners (in the days before electronic tuning) as they tried to ensure that an instrument was ready for a performance. The shortest and in some ways most interesting piece here is by far the least typical of Glass: it is his only transcription, of Paul Simon’s The Sound of Silence. It is a nicely managed re-creation that, however, does not really add anything to Simon’s original. There is nothing especially enlightening about Glassworlds, Volume 5—Enlightenment, which gets a (+++) rating but will, of course, be highly appealing to those who cannot get enough of Glass’s musical approach.





Gramola.at

Philip Glass' Klavierwerke sind bei Horvath also in den besten Händen, denn in seiner Persönlichkeit vereinen sich spieltechnische Könnerschaft und das gewisse Quäntchen Pop-Feeling, das man für Glass' minimalistische Klanglandschaften eben auch benötigt.

Grand Piano hat mit dem monegassischen Pianisten Nicolas Horvath den ersten Zyklus der Klaviermusik von Philip Glass aufgenommen, und auch auf der fünften Folge der aufsehenerregenden Serie gibt es neue Weltersteinspielungen. So spielt der preisgekrönte Pianist Glass' Arrangement des berühmten Paul Simon-Songs The Sound of Silence ebenso wie das wichtige, 40-minütige Stück 600 Lines. Nicolas Horvath gilt als führender Philip Glass-Spezialist auf dem Klavier und wird von seinem Endorser Steinway immer wieder für 12-stündige "Glass-Marathons" gebucht.



Stephen Smoliar (The Examnier – 24 October 2017)

A little over a week ago, Grand Piano released the fifth volume of Glassworlds, the project of pianist Nicolas Horvath to record the solo piano works of Philip Glass. The title of the album is Enlightenment. It features the longest uninterrupted track (a little over 40 minutes) that Horvath has recorded to date. This is “600 Lines,” one of the first two pieces composed for the Philip Glass Ensemble in 1968 and originally scored for winds and synthesizer. This album is the premiere recording of the composition performed as a piano solo.

As I have previously written, my own first contact with Glass took place at a performance by the Philip Glass Ensemble at the Solomon R. Guggenheim Museum in New York in the spring of 1970. There were three pieces on the program, each about twenty minutes in duration; and I have tried to reconstruct what they were. On the basis of sources I have consulted, my current conjecture is that they were “Music in Similar Motion,” “Music with Changing Parts,” and “Music in Fifths.” This was my first exposure to Glass’ “music with repetitive structures” technique. It did not take me long to “get it;” and, back in those days when there was a serious threat that making music might get taken over by abstract mathematicians (I was writing a doctoral dissertation in applied mathematics at the time), Glass’ music was a welcome breath of fresh air.

I wonder if I would have reacted to Glass quite as positively had my very first experience been of the uninterrupted 40 minutes of “600 Lines.” I suspect that the mathematician in me would have been fascinated with its almost obsessive approach to working with a bare minimum of motivic material that is then subjected to extensive permutation and combination. The question, however, is whether I would have succumbed to enough-is-enough exasperation before the piece had concluded; and that question would be coupled with just when that sense of “enough” overtook my listening capacity.

I find it interesting that there is no mention about the signification of the title “600 Lines” on the Philip Glass Web site, either in Glass’ own notes for the Compositions section or in those by Ivan Moody for the Alter Ego recording Web page. In contrast to the rethinking of counterpoint and harmony that I had encountered at the Guggenheim, “600 Lines” is obsessively monodic, consisting entirely of what at least can be notated as a single line. I use that hedge phrase because there is a plethora examples of how Johann Sebastian Bach could write something that way that still embodied elaborate structures of both counterpoint and harmony. Whether it is possible to find 600 separate “lines” in “600 Lines” may be a challenge for analysis; but I am not sure that the results would have much impact on the listening experience.

This takes us back to the enough-is-enough issue. I think that age has granted me a gift of greater patience when dealing with extended durations. Those who have been following me for some time know of the satisfaction I can get from listening to the symphonies of Anton Bruckner; and, while there is no mistaking Glass for Bruckner, it may be that the stance of the listener does not have to vary as much as one might suspect. Both of these composers are best enjoyed by the listener willing to let go of any “conventional” expectations and just let things happen. If one simply accepts a rhetoric in which repetitions are frequent but are consistently transformed into new repetitions, one can actually settle rather comfortably into the act of listening to “600 Lines” without succumbing to the enough-is-enough syndrome. Some Zen monk might call this a state of “enlightenment,” which might explain Horvath’s choice of title for the album; but, personally, I see no reason to let verbal semantics interfere with this particular approach to music-making.

The other major work on the album is “Mad Rush,” whose duration is about half that of “600 Lines.” Grand Piano’s advance material for this piece describes the structure as “something like a hidden sonata form.” This strikes me as being more appropriate for a graduate student in a desperate search for a thesis topic than for setting a context for the curious and sympathetic listener. “Mad Rush” may have had its origins in the classical concept of preceding an opening allegro movement with an adagio introduction; but, on the full twenty-minute scale of “Mad Rush,” structure comes down to the tension of oscillation between two senses of pace. (The noun “tempo” sounds a bit too dispassionate for music whose rhetoric comes off as far more personal.)

This is music most likely to resonate with anyone living in a major metropolis. The title refers to the inevitable chaotic hustle and bustle that a pedestrian is likely to encounter on just about any street, and Glass captures that with repetitive arpeggios that almost depict that street scene as Brownian motion. (Think of how many of the visual images captured by Godfrey Reggio in Koyaanisqatsi, accompanied by Glass’ music, can be taken, when seen from the distance that Reggio establishes, as Brownian motion.) In that “metropolitan” setting, the alternating adagio sections may be taken as the quiet seclusion of solitude.

All of this unfolds as yet another instance of Glass working with repetitive structures. However, Horvath plays this music with considerable attention to the dynamic level of every note, even within the thickest textures of superimposed arpeggios. Thus, it does not take long for the attentive listener to realize that, while the structures of the marks on the score page may be repetitive, the performance itself has a rhetorical shape of its own that enhances the surface structure of repetition with the deep structure of something more like a journey. This may be what the writers of the advance material had in mind for “a hidden sonata form;” but I have my doubts!

Not too long ago I was fortunate enough to listening to Glass himself play “Mad Rush” at a special Gala concert honoring the retirement of Ruth Felt, founder and President Emeritus of San Francisco Performances. Glass has observed that he has written piano music to keep his hands in shape as he gets older. However, his performance of “Mad Rush” was more than a “therapeutically” elaborate five-finger exercise; and it did not take long for me to settle into thinking about this music as a journey. Horvath’s recording seems to be thinking along the same lines; and, for all of my preferences for listening to music in a concert setting, the version of “Mad Rush” on this album comes very close to being just as satisfying as my recent “live” experience.

Mad Rush” and “600 Lines” are separated by the second of the five “Metamorphosis” pieces that Glass composed for solo piano in 1988. Horvath had already recorded this as part of piano versions of the complete set (all of which began as instrumental compositions) in the third volume of his project. I am not sure that there is a need for two separate performances of this piece (and, given the times on the track listenings, they appear to be distinct performances); but the idea of a “spacer” between the two long works on the album is definitely appreciated. Somewhat more amusing is the “coda” for the album, which is Glass’ own arrangement of Paul Simon’s “The Sound of Silence,” whose primary objective seems to be to assure the listener that Glass can be as comfortable with schmaltzy rhetoric as any other composer! One might almost call the arrangement a “remembrance of things Lisztian” (even if the point of reference would probably be late Liszt)!



Jean-Luc Clairet (ResMusica - 24 October 2016) : A Emporter, "Le Piano de Glass En Cinemascope"

Ce volume 5 de ce qui pourrait être une intégrale de la musique composée ou transcrite pour piano du grand compositeur américain par Nicolas Horvath fait voisiner, à l’instar des volumes précédents, classiques et inédits, et fait entendre une approche inhabituelle de pièces que l’on pensait figées à jamais dans le marbre d’une esthétique.

« Je suis certaine qu’un jour il réalisera quelque chose de très important dans le monde de la musique », prophétisa Nadia Boulanger au sujet de son élève américain. Bien vu ! Philip Glass, à 79 ans, est aujourd’hui « le compositeur-pas-encore-mort » le plus fêté par les spécialistes autant que par le grand public qu’il a su toucher au moyen d’un style populaire et exigeant qui n’appartient qu’à lui. La nuit blanche Glassworlds que Nicolas Horvath a donnée le 1er octobre dernier à la Philharmonie de Paris a vu, au terme de onze heures non stop, le public rappeler le jeune pianiste durant plus d’une heure. De mémoire de mélomane, l’on n’avait pas vu cela depuis la grande époque Chéreau/Boulez à Bayreuth ! Cadeau pour les glassiens et pour le compositeur qui, s’il avait été là, aurait vu défiler toute sa vie.

Le style de Nicolas Horvath, en vrai comme au disque, est tout autre autre que celui de ses devanciers (le compositeur, son alter ego Michael Riesman, Paul Barnes, Maki Namekawa). Quand il n’est pas d’une infinie douceur, confronté à la mélancolie récurrente de cette musique, le doigté affiche une virtuosité qui évoque les défis lisztiens. L’impression initiale d’un jeu un brin démonstratif laisse ensuite place au sentiment que le pianiste, amoureux fou d’un compositeur qui le bouleverse autant que Chopin, veut offrir à sa musique née de l’intime (Glass dit avec humilité que ses propres Études ont fait de lui-même un meilleur pianiste ! ) le cinémascope des Steinways, des grandes salles de concert (Horvath a joué en 2015 la première intégrale des Études à Carnegie Hall). Le piano de Glass en technicolor : certes inhabituel pour les gardiens du temple glassien mais assurément convaincant dans l’absolu.

Après avoir révélé le superbe Dreaming awake sur le volume 1, l’irrésistible A secret solo et Piano Sonata n° 2, une pièce d’avant le « grand coup de pied dans la fourmilière sérielle » (ainsi que le dit avec humour le compositeur lui-même) sur le volume 3, fait tenir, moyennant quelques reprises et tempi, les 20 Études sur un seul CD, Horvath ouvre le cinquième chapitre de Glassworlds avec la matrice Madrush, dans une version idéalement maîtrisée et plus longue que celle de 1989 sous les doigts du compositeur. Ayant visiblement été très à l’affût des concerts solo de Glass, Horvath enchaîne avec une nouvelle version d’un recueillement extrême d’une de ses plus belles pièces, Metamorphosis Two, puis avec le grand écart compositionnel d’une première mondiale : 600 lines, radicale composition de 1968 pour vents et synthétiseur conçue comme exercice pour le frais émoulu Philip Glass Ensemble d’alors mais qui n’est que jeu pour le pianiste français d’aujourd’hui.

En conclusion une transcription très émouvante par Glass du tube de Paul Simon The sound of silence achève de faire naître l’idée que, sous les doigts de Nicolas Horvath, la France rend à Philip Glass le statut qu’elle lui a longtemps dénié : le classique qu’il est devenu.



David Barker ( Music Web International – November 2016)

I encountered this series for the first time with the previous volume, attracted by the piano version of the soundtrack of The Hours (review). Having enjoyed that, it was logical to ask for this new release to review. That the two major works were relatively early ones made me somewhat reticent, because it is Glass of The Hours that most appeals to me, the early hard-core minimalism less so.

As it eventuated, I was right to be wary but only in respect of one of the two early works. Unfortunately it is the one - 600 Lines - that occupies more than half the running time. It is described as an “obsessive and hypnotically restless toccata” which does give some sense of it. It came at the end of Glass’s studies with Ravi Shankar and is constructed from five pitches, which very slowly mutate. It may be of interest in terms of what can be done with such limited resources but it is certainly doesn’t make for easy listening. If I had been playing this as an LP, I would have concluded that the stylus had become stuck but even so I checked that the CD timer was progressing. Lest I be accused of being simply intolerant of this type of work, I enjoy greatly the 160 minutes of Simeon ten Holt’s Canto Ostinato, with which it has much in common.

Mad Rush is described as one of Glass’s “keystone works”, showing the direction that his music would take. Certainly, it is very clear to see where The Hours music comes from. Yes, there is repetition but there is also progression, melody and warmth; all things which distinguish it from 600 Lines.

Metamorphosis I-V were included in Volume 3, and the work here is described as a further evolution, one that is very subtle. I have to admit that the differences are hard to spot. Though nowhere in the notes for either volume is it suggested that Metamorphosis II (or Two) share music with The Hours, they surely do.

Finally, we have what is believed to the only arrangement of another’s music that Glass has made. It is fascinating to hear the much-loved Simon melody thrive under the Glass treatment. I felt disappointed when it finished so soon.

Nicolas Horvath plays this music wonderfully well: warm and expressive or cold and mechanical as required. His notes are again excellent, and the Fazoli piano sounds glorious.

If you appreciate all of Glass’s styles, then this will provide great satisfaction. If like me, your tastes run to the more melodious end of the spectrum, ignoring forty minutes of the recording does make it harder to justify.



Jean-Baptiste Baronian (28 November 2016- Cescendo Magazine.be) Son 9 – Livret 8 – Répertoire 8 – Interprétation 10

Au début du mois d’octobre dernier, le pianiste français Nicolas Horvath s’est prêté dans la salle de la Philharmonie de Paris (à la Cité de la musique) à une performance peu ordinaire : jouer toute l’œuvre pour piano seul de Philip Glass en continu. Il a choisi de l’interpréter par ordre chronologique de composition – ce qui représente grosso modo douze heures de musique d’affilée. On peut aujourd’hui en avoir un aperçu partiel grâce à ce CD, le cinquième de la collection « Glassworlds » intitulé Enlightenment (Illumination), où sont réunies quatre pièces : Mad Rush, Metamorphosis Two, The Sound of Silence et 600 Lines. Il y va ici du premier enregistrement mondial de la version pour piano de cette dernière œuvre que Philip Glass avait écrite en 1967. C’est, au vrai, une sorte de toccata à la fois obsédante et « hypnotique », pour reprendre le terme utilisé par Nicolas Horvath lui-même. Elle représente, dit-il, « le zénith de l’ensemble des travaux et expérimentation » du compositeur américain « avec Ravi Shankar et des leçons particulières avec Alla Rakha » (considéré comme le plus grand joueur de tablâ du XXe siècle). Comme elle dure quarante minutes et qu’elle est « la réitération de cinq hauteurs de son (do, ré, mi, fa et sol) en mutation constante », elle exige de la part de son interprète non seulement une concentration de tous les instants (ce qui va de soi), mais surtout un sens profond du rythme – du rythme devenu en l’occurrence un mouvement perpétuel presque magique. On se dit d’ailleurs que 600 Lines pourrait durer une heure, ou deux, ou trois, et même davantage, et constituer une pulsation infinie, inépuisable.

Les inconditionnels de Philip Glass vont sans nul doute adorer ce disque. Ceux qui ne le sont pas risquent, eux, de s’en détourner dès les premières mesures (à supposer que cette notion si classique ait encore un sens dans la musique répétitive).




Glass : GlassWorlds Vol. 4 reviews



International Classical Music Awards : 2016 Nominee



International Piano (September 2016) : ***** Glass enthusiasts need not hesitate

Horvath’s playing, always unhurried, ensures that the desolation of ‘Why does someone have to die’ emerges as the emotional hub. It is fascinating to hear Glass’s take on Viennese Waltz (the 1977 Modern Love Waltz); and to have the world premiere of the composer’s own 2007 transcription of Notes on a Scandal, a fascinating, enigmatic piece. …Horvath brings an unremittingly hard touch to the hypnotic Music in Fifths. Glass enthusiasts need not hesitate



LesVeillesMusicales "L’ÂGE DE GLASS" On a écouté toute la nuit l'album "Glassworlds 4" de Nicolas Horvath

Quoi de mieux qu’une bonne période glaciaire pour lutter contre la canicule ? Quoi de mieux qu’une salle obscure pour retrouver un peu d’enthousiasme dans un monde qui en manque cruellement ? Raté. « L’Age De Glace 5 » nous a laissés froids (je me comprends). Scénario approximatif et gags recyclés ne font pas un bon film.

Pourquoi perdre tant de place à vous dire du mal des gens ? Parce que les séries se suivent et ne se ressemblent pas. Et parce qu’il faut que je justifie le titre de cette chronique. En juin dernier est sorti le volume 4 de l’intégrale de l’œuvre pour piano de Philip Glass, par Nicolas Horvath. Le volume 3 avait déjà été chroniqué sur LVM. Pourquoi y revenir aujourd’hui ? Parce que c’est très beau. Parce que même les réfractaires au minimaliste américain peuvent y trouver leur compte. Et parce que, de nouveau, le regroupement de pièces datées respectivement de 2002, 1977, 2006 et 1969 remet toute la carrière du compositeur en perspective. La pièce maîtresse, ici, c’est la transcription pour piano de la musique du film The Hours, de Stephen Dandry, avec Meryl Streep, Julianne Moore et Nicole Kidman. Celle-ci y incarne Virginia Woolf, jusqu’à son suicide en 1941.

Chez Philip Glass, comme dans « L’Age De Glace », les personnages sont toujours plus ou moins les mêmes : progressions harmoniques, arpèges… Mais ici, ils n’apparaissent qu’en filigrane, au détour d’une phrase, et je pense qu’une écoute en aveugle réserverait bien des surprises aux allergiques. Nicolas Horvath joue tout cela avec la même précision que dans le volume précédent, et la même indifférence aux « canons » du minimalisme, qui rejette l’ancienne vision, très mécanique, qui dominait dans l’interprétation de cette musique. On dirait du Liszt, quelquefois… Mais on aura l’occasion d’en reparler lors de la publication d’une interview avec le pianiste. Pour compléter le programme : Modern Love Waltz (une valse de Vienne à la sauce répétitive, comme un réveillon de Nouvel An mis en boucle), Notes On A Scandal et Music In Fifths (retour à la radicalité minimaliste de la fin des années 60, tendance « Quand on me cherche, on me trouve »). Gageons que, dans le volume 5, on ne trouvera pas les signes de l’épuisement manifesté par Scrat & Compagnie dans leur dernier opus. Adieu le machairodus et le rhinocéros laineux, bienvenue au piano.



Grego Appelgate Edwards (Gappelagte - September 8th 2016) : Horvath does a fabulous job, Bravo to Horvath

I reviewed the second volume of Nicolas Horvath's Glassworks on November 2, 2015. Horvath showed me then that he was a rather brilliant interpreter of the "Etudes" that made up the volume--and indeed his technical prowess and imagination made the music come alive convincingly.

Today we have his Glassworks 4, On Love (Grand Piano 692) and it is very well performed. There are four works, the lengthy 47 minute "The Hours," a short "Modern Love Waltz," the World Premiere of the short "Notes on a Scandal" and the earlier, mesmerizing "Music in Fifths."

I come off repeated listenings of this volume with the same general feeling I get with much of his later work. Some seem a little schmaltzy, some a little too simplistic, while others stick in my memory as worthily wrought.

Once again Horvath does a fabulous job as the pianistic conduit, but at times there

is not a whole lot he can do with the music. When there is depth, all is well. When no, less so. About half of this album attracts me. The other half I can leave alone. Bravo to Horvath in any case!



Chris Morgan (Scene Magazine, November 2016)



As performed by acclaimed pianist Nicholas Horvath, these works are evocative, cinematic and filled with a pathos that defies easy definition. …Rather than simply reproducing incidental music, Horvath’s naked arrangement shines a light on the score, allowing listeners to appreciate the subtle aspects of the work, both on an emotional and technical level.



David Barker (Musicweb-international.com - july 2016)

"In some ways, this is a very easy review to write, as those immune to the sound-world of Philip Glass won’t have clicked on the link. Almost certainly I’m preaching to the converted, and I could simply conclude “yes, go and get this” and not say any more. However, our editor frowns upon brief reviews, so I need to find another two hundred and fifty words or so to avoid his wrath. Fortunately, that won’t be too difficult.

Surprisingly, the first three volumes in this series (GP690, GP691, GP692) have managed to bypass our reviewing team, myself included. I put my hand up for this because of the presence of the piano arrangement of The Hours, which I consider to be one of the finest film scores ever written. This recording includes all fourteen movements of the film-score. The only other recording to provide this is on Glass’s own Orange Mountain Music label, with his collaborator Michael Riesman playing (review). Valentina Lisitsa included eight of the movements in a well-received double CD of Glass piano pieces from last year (review). Horvath takes a much less emotional approach to the work than these two. He shaves two minutes from Lisitsa’s time in the final movement of The Hours, alone, and around ten minutes from Riesman overall. I feel this works well; while the film-score is highly emotional, which suits the lush orchestral scoring, the inbuilt repetitive nature suits a more restrained approach when played on the piano. This version doesn’t surmount the orchestral one, but is an interesting alternative which I will certainly listen to on a regular basis.

Of the three other pieces, Notes on a Scandal is from a film-score, and has much in common with music from The Hours, though less motoric. This single movement is an arrangement by Glass of two parts of the score. Modern Love Waltz was written to accompany a radio adaptation of Constance DeJong’s novel Modern Love, and then employed in the ballet score The Waltz Project. It is his only waltz, and is an intriguing mix of his style and the Viennese dance. Music in Fifths is something of an odd one out here. It is very much of his early highly repetitive style and seems to have little connection to the “love” theme of the CD.

Production values are very good: the Fazioli piano sounds quite beautiful, and the notes are informative, except in justifying the inclusion of the early piece. Perhaps it would have been better to have omitted the “On Love” sub-title. I will certainly be seeking out the earlier releases in this series.



Jean-Baptiste Baronian (Crescendo Magazine) Philip Glass arrangé et retranscrit : Son 9 – Livret 8 – Répertoire 8 – Interprétation 8

La plus importante partition du CD, dont il est une question ici, constitue un arrangement pour piano de la musique du film The Hours, forme une subtile et étonnante musique d’atmosphère et, chose paradoxale, donnent même l’impression d’être apaisantes



Infodad.Com (28 July 2016)

This is a CD for fans of the film and diehard Glass advocates, one of whom is the pianist, Nicolas Horvath.



Stéphane Renard (L'écho – 30 July 2016) 4/5

Nicolas Horvath poursuit l'intégrale des œuvres pour piano solo de Philip Glass. Son quatrième album est une invitation à la méditation. Ressourçant.



Michel Dutrieue ( klassiek-centraal - 17/08/16 ) **** Glassworlds, pianomuziek van Philip Glass : Warm aanbevolen.

De tijdloze melancholie van zijn met een BAFTA (British Academy of Film and Television Arts) bekroonde muziek voor de film “The Hours” uit 2002 vormt een organische suite aangedreven door drie krachtige karakters in de film, hier vervolledigd met drie ongepubliceerde bewegingen. De “Modern Love Waltz” uit 1977 breidt de grenzen van het minimalisme uit door de combinatie van de typische Glass stijl met de subtiele, Weense danstraditie. De transcriptie van de filmmuziek voor “Notes on a Scandal” (2006) is een première opname. Steve Reich beschreef de iconische “Music in Fifths” uit 1969 als de klank en energie van een voorbij razende goederentrein, een typisch Amerikaans beeld.



Murielle Fournier et Brigitte Dunwoody (Le BabillART - August 2016)

Le pianiste hors normes Nicolas Horvarth, 37 ans, est né à Monaco, a commencé à jouer du piano dès l’âge de 5 ans et à 15 ans il enseignait comme assistant de son professeur. Il a gagné 11 prix prestigieux à ce jour.Connu d’abord comme interprète de Liszt nous livre sur ce disque le projet de son intégrale de Philip Glass Glasswords—4 On Love



Jean-Marc Warszawski (musicologie.org 10 octobre 2016)

Nicolas Horvath, pianiste et compositeur qui semble, heureusement pour lui et nous,  avoir un peu de mal à entrer dans le rang, continue, avec ce quatrième album, à enregistrer les mondes pianistiques de Philip Glass, dont on fêtera les quatre-vingts ans l’an prochain.  Nicolas Horvath, qui aime les expériences scéniques, a d’ailleurs passé la nuit du 1er au 2 octobre 2016 à la philharmonie de Paris pour jouer l’intégrale des œuvres pour piano du compositeur américain.  Que les nationalistes ne prennent pas ombrage, fin juin 2015, le pianiste a passé la nuit à la Maison de la radio pour interpréter les Vexations composées en 1893 par Érik Satie, qui consistent en 840 reprises d’une  phrase musicale, pour une durée selon le tempo qui varie 12 et 24 heures.

Au programme de cet album qui ne dure pas toute la nuit, mais qu’on peut faire tourner plus de 840 fois, Nicolas Horvath a choisi The Hours, œuvre en 14 numéros, composée en 2002 pour le film du même nom de Stephen Daldry. À l’origine, cette œuvre qui fut remarquée et applaudie a été composée pour un quatuor à corde (un seul violon et une contrebasse) avec piano. Les arrangements pour piano sont de Michael Riesman (le pianiste de la création) et Nico Muhli.

La Modern Love Waltz date de 1977, n’est pas une musique de film, mais une musique radiophonique, pour la lecture d’un roman de Constance Dejong : Modern Love (elle sera la librettiste de l’opéra Satyagraha, créé par Philip Glass à Rotterdam en 1980). C’est une des premières œuvres de Glass restées au répertoire des pianistes.

Notes on a scandal, est également une musique (fêtée) de film, celle, en 2006, de  de Richard Eyre, inspiré du roman de Zoë Heller. La partition originale a été transcrite pour piano en 2007 par le compositeur. Il s’agit ici du premier enregistrement mondial.

La musique de Philip Glass n’est ni minimaliste ni répétitive, il serait difficile de dire par rapport à quoi elle le serait, même si la répétition modulaire en est un élément de formalisation essentiel. Personnellement nous préférons penser à la contraction de la musique tonale qui commence à s’opérer avec Brahms puis l’expressionnisme, une musique à l’image d’un monde qui ne se développe plus et ressasse ses poncifs, une espèce d’indifférence, comme les dernières notes de Wozzeck, l’opéra de Berg. Une manière de continuer à planer après le camisolage de la fureur bienheureuse des années 1968.

Pour Nicolas Horvath, le thème de ce cédé est l'amour. Contemplatif ? Routinier ?



The Naxos Chart - July 2016 : Naxos Top 20 Bestsellers



Gramola.at

Die inzwischen vierte Folge der Gesamteinspielung der Klavierwerke des Komponisten Philip Glass durch den monegassischen Meistervirtuosen Nicolas Horvath widmet sich ganz und gar dem universalen Thema Liebe.

Von originären Klavierkompositionen bis hin zur Transkription von Filmmusiksoundtracks ist wieder das ganze breite musikalische Spektrum vertreten, das Glass' Klangrede beim Publikum so außerordentlich beliebt macht.

Vierte Folge der Gesamteinspielung der Klavierwerke des Komponisten Philip Glass durch den monegassischen Meistervirtuosen Nicolas Horvath widmet sich ganz und gVon originären Klavierkompositionen bis hin zur Transkription von Filmmusiksoundtracks ist wieder das ganze breite musikalische Spektrum vertreten, das Glass' Klangrede beim Publikum so außerordentlich beliebt macht.ar dem universalen Thema Liebe.



mardi 26 avril 2016

"The" Way, or my little steps into the Santiago Pilgrimage Chapter 2 : 2016


"The" Way, or my little steps into the Santiago Pilgrimage Chapter 2 : 2016


Le Puy-en-Velay - Saint-Foy de Conques



Yes, this time i don't wait a year before sharing all the pictures and the comments ! Like that i can still have some vivid memories !

This year, the pilgrimage was very particular as i had to carry many persons in my bags, some friends, some people i love and some family too. My first Santiago journey was a revelation-like, and this time i knew how to do it.

Unlike the first time, were i was "almost like a tourist" , i really prepared seriously "The Way". For months i did running everyday . From a lazy 10 minutes , to 3 hours and a half ! Yep , the ones knowing me won't believe their eyes. I really do sport !
As a result my body shape and condition were good. I also bought some very necessary things like a special water tank with a plastic tube, some new special socks too (2 pairs was not enough!) , a raining cape , a rain trouser , more shirts , "good" food for everyday (dry fruits , Bio Juice on separated little tanks and also some dry bred and cheese and ham , every time separated and ready for everyday).
Also some other knowing me very personally knows that this 2015-2016 was not a good one as i had to face metaphysical , psychological and personal questioning. So i also did many readings (gospels, philosophy, Tao, poetry ... ). And on top of everything , a close friend (the french composer Frederick Martin) was on terminal stade of cancer, and i spent my week before visiting him at his hospital...
So indeed, walking had this time a much much deeper meaning !
I was walking for all of them.

This time, there was no "big" revelation like last time. I knew what i was going to get, i knew that i catch the walking or pilgrim virus.

As usual, everything was organised by the fantastic team of the Roc Estello monastery , and everything was simply perfect.
I was expecting a team of "young pilgrims" as Father Pierre Dumoulin told me last summer, but ..... I got the same team of last year !!!!! I was so happy !!!!!!
Yes i knew almost all of them, we had so much fun and so many great moments that i was so happy to do it with them again !
But .... not sure they will be next year as most of them were simply missing "this" part of the Pilgrimage to Santiago di Compostella.

So, last year i arrived "at the end", but this year i started from the begining (almost) . Yes not completely the begining as the tradition said that one has to go "from his own door". Well .... a bit far away for the lazy me !
This year we started from Le-Puy-en-Velay until Saint-Foy de Conques. It was more than 50 kilometers longer than last year !!!! Thank God i trained myself !!!!
It was also harder : many strong climbing !
Unlike what i expected (last year it was SO WARM! but come on , we were in Portugal !!!) we faced : Cold , freezing winds , snowfall , rainfall , many mud , some small ponds , also high sun .....

Once again , the experience was similiar as the Satie 's Vexations : i encounter despair , sadness , happiness , bliss , joy .... Yes it was hard , sometime even very hard , but everyday we could reach the goals . And i was way way less tired than last year , and my body was not broke into pieces !

Also, i had some revelation moments. Some big questioning i had got answered (i guess?) , and i really feel more peaceful in myself. I felt the strong desire to continue and to work hard ! I feel i am starting to be on the good path.

Yes .... this time , i really felt i did not want it to finish ... i wanted to stay on "The Way", but .... i am bringing it with me. Slowly by slowly things are changing ... let cross the fingers for the best !

Also some very strange event took place : i was carrying one of my "lucky charm" that i had from more than 5 years from Japan. One night, as i was simply changing myself before sleeping, for the very very first time, it totally broke into pieces ! it was all around the room !
Few hours after..... i received a text message, my friend Frederick had died ...........  

Well ... also this time i took much more pictures too !
Once again i am sharing them with you , and i will write some fun comments that will complete this article ! In a funnier way for sure !




First vision of the Le Puy cathedral


With a huge and magnificent giant St Mary Statue  


yep , we could not visit it , it was already too late T.T


Old stones walls



As this year we are on the Year of Misericordia , some very special doors are open ( once every 12 or 20 years , i forgot ) . A very good omen for sure !!!


the normal huge entrance




Father Dumoulin explaining the entrance meanings



Fresca from the Byzantine period , a time when Church was only one


A wooden door from a very remote medieval time




The so famous Black Mary ( black for mud, or earth)


A stone from the druidic period , were Mary appeared and asked for a church to be build (tons of miracle happens on this stone)






Yes ! we were able to see the so famous Needle from the Holy Crown of Jesus given my Louis the Saint (who bought from a wagon full of gold, the Holy Crown to the Venitians )


a medieval baptismal , were Franc were baptised by thousands (after the baptism of Clovis , king of the Franc ( NB : the Franc and not the french !)







my good friend Ambroise ! we had so much fun (and strong debates) together !


One of the mos important symbols in the Medieval time : two colombs drinking in the Holy Calice, one of the most known symbols to represent Eucharisty


The vegetals are also symbols of Eternity





Medieval tombstones of important monks


we entered the treasure room








It is said that this horse holder was cast with one of the Holy Cross Nail by Charlemagne.
A legend that even the monks there are not quite sure of its autenticity



The Cathedral









We did not even start that i got some answer there at the bottom of this special cross


By night the cathedral is wonderful



DAY 1




In very early on the morning we have a special Santiago Pilgrim mass ! (with many presents!)


And only for us they open the bottom door !
It is said that, it is the cathedral stomac and the pilgrim are like newborn passing by it !


And "The WAY" starts !!!



the team is there !
The Le Puy en Velay Cathedral is simply breathcatching !



our Saint Patron !


Le Puy from up the nearest mountain


We finally get out of civilisation and starts the dust road



A nice map ( there will be many of them, so you will be able to easily trace the road we walked on )



Still upper


Still climbing




on a desert village we cross this adorable kid offering "for free" any drink to the pilgrims !
The tradition of the village , as she said !


And from now, everything will look like that


Wonderful mountains


We start to cross other slower pilgrim from the other days



a nice little bridge





And our first stop , for small food only (not yet lunch) , we have already walked 3 hours
and the group will start to meditate on the Holy scriptures


Romanian Style church



a castle like house


the team at work !





Another little chapel , very very soon we will arrive at our first lunch stop !


Sainte Rommette , i never heard about her before !  


A Madone from the XI Century


It starts to be very wild
It s hard to believe from this picture, but few hours before it was snowing !
It was cold cold , but all the snow movement was so beautiful to watch (even if we were under it)
curiously even if my hands were freezing, i felt so much warmth inside me, exactly as the poetry (i forgot the author) : it is snowing outside, but my heart is warm

Another fun thing : i got lost and loose 30 minutes walking on the mud in a middle of the forest for nothing



I could not go without doing such a pic there !


Antique clothes lavatory


some ruins


the way is getting narrower and narrower



On this valley the nature was more beautiful


nice little bridge




we get nearer ! we arrived at Saint Privat-d'Alier


Tonight chapel for our mass (it was sooooooo freezing there .... )





the garder near the church was so peacefull


Saint Liszt pray for us !!!!




DAY 2



Saint Privat d'Alier from far ..... so lovely


today will be hard !



we are getting on top of a first mountain


still wonderful scenery


upper ...



still upper ....



And we arrived to Rochegude !


for some members it was difficult



little top cute chapel




such a gorgeous scenery , but .... next we have to go down the mountain and .... to get to the other one who is ..... taller !!!
a hard day i told you !





and we go !


a risky journey



the 10 am stop to enjoy some little food


we met some nice friends ^^



we arrived all down


visiting the nice little town



with a lost factory




and we start climbing now !



yes, in case you have some problem during the climbing , some emergency numbers are ready to take care of you ! a bad omen .........





a dream like view








lost in the middle of the mountain , a copy of the Santa Magdalena cave



still higher



Father Pierre Dumoulin



the climbing is still not finished







time to time we could meet some very nice locals :)


and we arrived !
in fact this climbing is known as one of the 3 most difficult ones of "The Way".
At the end the team was mostly exausted (a lunch was planned on the top).
Also we could meet a woman (not from our group) that was was experiencing a traumatic shock. She could reach the top, but after it she could not move alone anymore, was down on her feet with extremely heavy and irregular breath. Yes .... for today and for her .... The Way was over.
We never crossed her, or her friend so ...we don't know what happened to them after this day ....  


after our lunch, we returned on "The Way"




very inspiring to see all those sheeps, specially after the Holy reading of the Good Shepard





wilder and wilder




time to time we could cross town in the middle of nowhere



still climbing ...........





and finally the city is on view !
there are those horrible candle statues ....


pretty hard to see, on this picture you have : the Gevaudant Monster, and Holy Mary !




and playing the lazy on the village




a fun fact : as the church was cute (and the city) , i felt i really needed to take my camera .
It was 2 minutes before te Mass.
I did it but ..... i got myself totally lost ! i was running and returning to the starting point ....
some of my pilgrimage brother saw me from his room and was shouting to wonder what i was doing. Why after almost 10 hours of walking i was running on circle around the village ? (the church was only  2 min slow walk from the hotel)


Today Mass was dedicated to you Fréderick .... You who knows got all the answer ... you my dear friend .... may God welcome you in the best way you deserve




DAY 3





Sunrise over the Saint Roch place


the Saint Roch chapel .... yes it was a veryyyyyyyyyyyy cold day !


Here what we are doing ! our first step of the Santiago Way


The small but very nice Saint Roch chapel
a very sad legend : he was known to help all the sick people from "The Way" , once he also arrived in Santiago .... he could never see the Saint Jacques tomb as .... he was also sick and died at the city's door ...



the landscapes are pure dream, i am myself discovering the France center .... how beautiful


My brothers and Sisters are still full of force !



we enter the forest





Yesterday most of the team got sunburn so .... we are obliged to put some cream.
I was stupid enough not to put any cream (my face and arms were burning like hell !!!)  .... luckily it was the last days of sun , otherwise .... only God knows what could happen to me


Guy , my brother !!! we had so many meeningful talk. Last year he helped me to understand so many things in relationships (it was a family psychologist, couple councilor, and also was taking care of sportmen so thank to him there was things i could not understand).
We have always so much fun together, a very young and full of energy spirit !
I really hope he will join the team next year !!!!


On the way, you always find four legs friends =^.^=


and wonderful flowers


The Roc Estello team is on its way !!!!





Seems quite ridiculous those little water things, but .... this is a bad omen to what will happen next !
Yes it was raining all night !



the wonderful church of Saint-Alban sur Limagnole



so inspiring !!!


as usual we got tons of infos !
Also we got our lunch stop there ! (not in the church of course, come on !!!! )


héhé , time to time we have some very nice messages let by locals ! yes it really gives us strengh !!!!


and we continue ...




wonderful landscapes


Still on "The way" .... as Satie would write .... "Seul, pendant un instant" ....



the path is becoming harder and harder


our brilliant team is still doing wonders


rocks (not paved) way


another cute 4 legged friend was staring at us and not moving a single inch (it was not dead, simply so much used to see pilgrims ...)


Yes , time to time we still have some lovely message at the pilgrim attention !
thank you so much who ever did it !

Also, i remember the wonderful talk we had at this climbing. Some brothers and sisters life story is so inspiring and great. A real life lesson for the inexperimented youngling i am


Still wonderful landscapes



Yes, the neighbour grass is really greener !!! ^^


Our so dear Mireille :) we love you :) :) :)



extremely cute 4 legged friends who visited us during our lunch break  =¨^.^¨=


so cuuuuuuuuuute !
like every wild cat, they are almost impossible to pet.
interested by humans, but with full of fear. One step ahead, and 3 steps back ... like some humans too ...
this one looks like "Mimine" a wild cat we could take care.
it took us years to give her full trust in us, but once we had it, she was one of the most wonderful cat, giving incredible hugs.
Unfortunately .... we lost her last year before my Carnegie Debut .... the animals doctor believed she might have eat or catch a mice that was poinsoned and then she was poinoned ...
It was for us a very sad lost ....


a brother of her ! (they were something like 6 or 7 wild cats).
I was at this time too much tired to even think about catching all of them on picture ....


And we go !!!!
a bad thing for me : we start too fast and when i put back my shoes , i lanced the left feet one too tight .... after a little while my foot was too tense and i could walk only with difficulties .... how stupid i was .....


Some cute caw :) yummyyyyyyyyyyyyy




"The" climbing ....




some other trees


a pilgrim (maybe?) hut
It was fully fonctionnal inside it !


This woman story is quite incredible :
we met her during our lunch break and talk bit with her :
on the second day, as the "way down" was so abrupt , she felt and got a problem with her right leg (muscle problem, luckily no broken bones). She had to stop for 3 days , and after it, she would never stop for all the world gold ! She planned to walk 5 kilometers every day (she is walking very slowly as only one leg can work) and to do it until the end !!! She aims to reach Santiago for Christmas !!!!
one of the best exemple of courage !  



another nice chapel




i finally did a picture of myself ^^



We are reaching La Truyere


a cute little town and the end of hell for me


another cute 4 legged friend, i was too much into walking with my painful feet to even think of stopping


some are taking a nice break before continuing ... i was stupid enough not to join them ....


the rest of the team is also on their way



this way was wonderful but .... difficult


and then i was alone for quite a long time ( 2 hours? ) , as i really feel the need to meditate on my life


it was still climbing, and very time we reached one high point, we could discover so wonderful and new landscapes


some nice greetings of friends :)



yes ..... again i love this Satie sentence that fitted perfectly "this" time :
"Seul, pendant un instant" ... (lonely, for a brief moment)



lonely


surrounded by wonders


and within the torments of my own problems


team is far, but curiously i still feel the need of loneliness




as life (and with this pain) , each step was harder


and the sun was very high and strong (we were up on the mountain so ... you feel it way stronger, it burns you)



when you see such wonders, how can you even dare complaining about life


but you do .... despair temptation ...


each feet step brings me nearer my goal, but also each steps reminded me that .... i still don't know my goal position ... even if i am each time closer to it, i am also reminded that ... it is more and more out of range ...
why continue then ?
why loosing so much energies
why spending how much strengh ?
hope of course
hope fuels you
and "The Way" reminds you something
even if the goal is wonderful
even if you hope so much to reach your dreams
to embrace it
The way to reach it is even more important
if you let Him do the work he planned for you 
The way to reach it, shapes you
transforms you
metamorphoses you

So why even feel desperate because the goal is so much out of range?
You "should" be happy to be on the way
and ... being able to have such wonderful goals
as all your life you believed it was only "stupid kids" and fantasy dreams

Be joyful , your life has sense now
and .... never say never ....
maybe one day ...
one day ...
you will also be able to discover Prune


yes we arrived on top
i could barely walk anymore


even the car's road it nice !



the team is there




yes !!!! going down finally !!!!!


Arrived finally at Aumont-Aubrac !!!!
ah .... we walked SO MUCH this day , i was so happy to arrive


Of course , our Beau-Gosse is always at full force !!!


unfortunately the town is big
><!!!!!!
still have to walk for 'the' break !
and sun is still so high



discovering a nice little town




the church was great


and yes , i did some little concert too !
some of the team remembered my concert last summer at Roc Estelle and wanted to have their hears filled with some nice tunes ^^


playing tourists ^^



And here is a very nice picture of the whole team !!!!!!


tonight cheese !!!! handmade of course !!!!!!!!!


And .... the local speciality : ALIGOT !!!!!!!!!!
So good !!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!


Yes we were talking about it for days !!!!
We finally ate "Marguerite" !!!!!!!!
So for the little running joke :
Marguerite is an Aubrac caw that won the price of the best caw from Paris "Salon de l'Agriculture"
one of the most important thing in France for rural products
So each time we crossed some Aubrac caw I was saying : "hooo you are so cute, i can't wait to eat you" !!!! héhéhéhé so mean !!!!!!!!!!!!

And ..... with Aligot we got Aubrac cow and ....... HO YES !!!!! this was SO GOOD !!!!!!!!!!!!!!

Those caws are very special, their milk is almost impossible to get as they will give it only to their "child" . And if one child unfortunately loose her mom , no other caw will give him milk ....


here was the place ! we really recommand it to you !!!



DAY 4




it was a very cold day !
and also was raining all night once more



we all were freezing


walking in the middle of wild nature


time to time dealing with some problematic passages



really in the middle of nowhere


some passage were "very problematic"
thank to some pilgrims or locals (?) there were some woods on those ponds
but ... they were old and .... not very stable ....
if you felt from it , you would fall in the pond and get your feet watered
something you really don't want when you have to walk the whole day ....



more ponds ....


wild nature


returning into the forest





our lovely team :)
We had so many fun time with Odette ! She is a fabulous Icon painter
we were all the time joking together :)


a new member to the team, Christine is a classical music passionate
time to time we were talking about things related to that





no wood this time , trying to guess where was the best way




getting on top
some huge stones where there , in the middle of nowhere
as remanent of a time where men were none






nature wonders



a little house lost in nowhereland


a flower paradise





some strange megalith ?


still on the portraits
another pilgrim who could join this year the team (but an old member)
everyone in her family is doing music, also we had great talk about gardening and taking care of all plants and trees, that was really top interesting as .... i am so bad for that !!!





another very cute 4 legged friend
he was there , alone .... eating his grass
and very nice too :)


wild land dominated with very strong (and cold) winds !
sometime you felt it could blow you away instantanetely







Yes , after such a climb and such a view , you really feel you are a caractere of the Wuthering Heights


Still the strange megaliths



a place where man has no place



really happy to get there !




some muddy roads .... not very nice


walking into the wild



Not made for men for sure



nature is an almost depressing state
but .... the water is gently and silently following his path
whatever is around, life always goes on



Civilisation is back !!!!!!!!!


But no one in town ..... is it a ghost town ????



we aimed for a small break


But
...
it was
TOO COLD !!!!!!!!!!!
so ....
we moved !



no wonder why no one is outside , too cold , too windy !


team is in good shape !


nowhere land


silent nature




a lost house


héhé ! I could not resist !!!!




the team has more and more difficulties as the road is getting more and more difficult each day




At Nasbinals !!!
finally reaching our lunch break !


a nice church






our Saint Patron


It took me a while to understand the meaning of "this" engraving
It is not at all some depict of a war
but on the other hand the symbol of your own inner battle over all the materialistic things that are polluting one life



And we arrived to Aubrac !


With the so famous "Tour d'Aubrac" who had a bell special to the lost pilgrim (because of the dense fog there)


Ha we were so tired .... we really could enjoy a very nice coffee !!!







a stone map !
not as old as it seems : 1990 !


the Tower inside is nice , but ... well ... we already saw much better


We arrived as Saint-Chely-d'Aubrac



a cute little old town






and his so famous "pont des pèlerins" !




deserted house ... from a time i was surely not born yet



nice church with an ugly curtain !




trying to figure out how the church organ is working


yes the team wanted their concert !
it seems it became almost a tradition ^^
on organ i could play only some Satie and Glass , as most of the piano repertoire is not quite fitting


Veronika is enjoying some gardening tools !


we arrived to Saint-Côme d'Olt 
it was after such a long day our night destination ...


an old town


with wonderful old streets












and his wonderful church








the Abbaye we slept held by some sisters



very cosy place



its garden is a pure dream






getting out to enjoy some drinks together




the city by "almost" night


the pictures render it as it looks like an airport , but it is much nicer that it seems !


DAY 5



we leave the city , "The Way" here seem to have been put in a very remote city corner !




a magnificent bridge


our team is in very good spirit !


a greener nature there !


more humidity is better, as we need to drink less






the team is still full of high spirit !




The Saint-Hilarian Cross




arrived in Espalion !



a very welcoming nature



L'Eglise de Perse
a wonderful medieval church who is not even on the map !






Byzantine frescos



a pure jewel !



highly inspiring !


the best place for our 10 am Gospel (translated from Aramean) recitation
Bruno got highly inspired here !!!


Still the colombs drinking the Holy Calice


And the Inner Fight


Jesus in His splendor



everything from the XI Century


Judgment day !


And we arrived in Espalion !!!


a nice and vivid town


luckily we arrived for the market day !



OF COURSE ! i tried the local products !!!
Here the Pascades , some very yummy things !


Le Pont Vieux



More delicious local products .... too bad we could not stay


Le Pont Vieux from far away
this part of the medieval city is very lovely !



some old destroyed castle ....
Moussorgski would have been very inspired by it ^^



The Way is nice there


And still some local hospitality !!!!
Free hot drink !!!!!!
YEAYYYYYY


Isn't it wonderful ?



another nice Abbaye lost in nowhere
Saint-Pierre de Bessuéjouls







we had to climb some pretty dangerous high stairs to discover the Church's real wonders



All the Chapiteaux there are just pure sculpting jewels





the original entrance : by outside !
so when the monks were attacked , they simply bring up the ladder and no one could climd to get them !! (the "dangerous" stairs were added much much later)


so peacefull




our Father Pierre really looks like some Comandator here !





and we finally reached out lunch place !!! Yaaaay !!!!


but .... no one knew what we had to face after it .....


still spiritful !
but .... not for long !


yes ! a very hard climbing with a road totally full of deep mud !!!!
it had rained too much yesterday and the road is almost not practiable !


the team is not very pleased
and Father Pierre is trying his best to cheer us up !



forget your confort and clean clothes !


whatever you will try , you will get drirty !




a first step / stop
wth a wonderful view



beautiful nature


another step , i would have love to do the lunch break here !!!
it is so beautiful !


eh .... path is getting more difficult !


really slipery !



so glad to see stones time to time ! means less mud !!!



but ... it never last long
><!!!!



on the most remote and difficult place, you always see the most beautiful things
is it a life allegory ?




some volcanic stones
or Basaltic organs


and we arrived to the top !!!

luckily it was only for 30 min long


very glad to be up !


the rest of the team is also coming


but the break is never long
even if you wish to stay longer , it is not good for your muscles to stay inactive too long




some nice town



some achitectural explanations



Nature there is simply wonderful
something you would love someday to share ...
with someone you really love



returning to the forest




this is what we did !
today i still can't believe we walked that much !


is it always 'the way' ?



no place for men




men trace dissapear more and more






again mud ... and more mud ...


yes .... we forgot what clean was meaning


We arrive to Verrières



a very lovely castle






another 4 legs friend








i love those nice message that locals leave for pilgrims !







a private chapel


not very safe to go there







a really lovely town !
romantic at his best







still climbing




we met some other pilgrims






wild nature




We arrived to the wonderful Estaing city !!!


Ambroise , our BG !


looks like some futur Facebook profile picture for Ambroise  ^^


Once more , how could i resist ^^
THE city of one of our very funny president !



the famous d'Estaing bridge



its church


looking very serious






Old lovely city




with a wonderful church







Saint-Fleuret reliquaire
extremely popular there !
he is known to cure disease and to make straight back some distorted things




No, no he is not dead, simply sleeping and not paying attention anymore to pilgrim !



and yes .... we made it !!!!
our night desination Golinhac !!!



very small and deserted town


a little nice church
where they have a mass every 2 months !
So the locals were delighted that we were here !


Yep , once again , i played organ for the mass !



a very very old Hotel



It was the 81th birthday of our lovely Mireille !
Can you believe that ??? she is doing so great !!!!
i really hope i can be as vigorous as her at her age !!!


having some fun




playing ninja




and our last night stop !


a nice little camping with a swimming pool (not open yet)
a fun fact : as they just bought the camping , they had some Holy water from northern France
and asked Father Pierre to baptise the camping !



DAY 6 - last walking day





the team is taking forces for the last day of walk !



we met a nice team from Britany !
i still can't believe they slept all night outside on their tent under the heavy rain .....


a really creepy school !


and we go !!!!


the climbing is hard
cold and rainy !
ho gosh !


and .... the fog is there !


everything turns vaporous


we walk into nothingness







but our 4 leg friend do not care about this not good weather at all



into the forest





still cold and rainy





and full of muddy roads




this tree seems not to enjoy my presence




such a fantastic nature


yes , since i was 14 and discovered it in Venezia , i really DO love fog





me walking on the fog and the gentle rain


still me


where is the path ?


where is my team ?





here a very nice guest house (Le Soulier de Saint-Jacques)
with a little chapel and everything
and curiously , they know Father Pierre very well
too bad the team was so far away as we were offered some nice coffee !



the team went far away us, so we stayed a long time together, Father Pierre and me
talking about various things, Life, religion, Faith , future ...



magnificent nature





a very nice bridge









after maybe 30 minutes , we could finally join the rest of the team !



And we arrived at Espayrac !!!



a nice church






And our 10 am stop




everywhere i put my eyes on , is just wonderful





ha ! not a good omen !







And we enter Sénergues






again a very nice town
After a lunch there .... we go to our final destination !!!




climbing again ...




mud and water ... we start to get used of it

ha ! the stones !!!



a looooooooooong way





and here a very funny fact :
we were 6 from the team all together
walking way before the other team members
we all had very intense discussion (3 groups of 2)
I was debating politics and school pedagogy with Ambroise
and ....
we ....
did NOT follow The path !!!!!!!!!!
we missed "one" little mark
and we ....
lost 30 minutes !!!!!
almost 3 kilometers more !!!



we arrived to a nice castle
and as there were no more Pilgrim indications we were top worried
There was one road sign to arrive to Conques, but 'by car', so the team was not very pleased to use it
one local arrived on his quad (with his wife on his back)
We asked him where to get to the GR 65 (the Pilgrim road)
and he told us to get back , and on top of the hill to turn right
Well .... that was not "that near" !!!!!
we had to walk and walk long on mud road again ...

after quite a while we arrived to the path again , the signs were very small
We crossed the guy back on the GR 65 , still on his quad with his wife , taking all the place of the road
we thanked him
but ...
later ...
the GR 65 joined the main road
and ....
yes ....
the "nice castle' was not far away from there ....

This bastard could have simply told us to turn left and follow the road sign !!!
It will have spare you a lot of kilometers !!!!!!!!

We were SO TOP ANGRY !!!!!!!!!!!



yes .... the GR 65 is still not at sight !!!!


back on The Way , we crossed a fantastic flower land



back on the road .... mostly silent as we started to be tired
and pissed off !






still wonderful land !





a nice little town



with its nice chapel


The Symbol of all the Saint Jacques Pilgrims
or the Jacquets !


a 4 legged friend ... i was so tired that petting him did not even crossed my mind !



more cows


a funny donkey


yes , it is just wonderful !





yes , we get nearer !



And here it starts !!!!!
the very very last way down !
pretty hard to do , but Conques is just at our gasp !!!!





narrow and difficult !





top slippery





we DID it !!!!!!!!!!




ENTERING CONQUES !!!!!!!!!





The city is simply splendid
i took tons of pictures as everywhere i put my eyes on was just a pure dream














Sainte-Foy Cathedral





and when you wonder if your choices are good ... a nice sign !
A strange fact ! i did very well to take this picture as ...
when i showed it to Ambroise he wanted to see it by himself to take it on pictures
but ...
we looked for almost 10 minutes and we could not find it back !!!!

A heart-shapped red stone within a white stone !


our sleeping place !


some old monk stone tombs



the stair to our dormitory


a wonderful chapel


with Bizantine frescos


Inside the Cathedral


a pure wonder

also the monk there are musicians and sings wonderfully !
plus the organ player is very good !!


here he is !
he released some cds ! most of them at the organ , and one at the piano
the piano is a best off of various known things
and the organ albums have pilgrims music from the old times !


Annunciation
from the Renaissance !



The so famous Entrance !
really wonerful


and equally wonderful , the monk very very funny explanation !
yes even in tourist guide they are talking about it !


The team is enjoying food after such a long and hard day


The chapel at night .... mysterious at possible
we gathered here (as we were going to leave on the next morning)
to exchange what we will remind from this year Pilgrimage
And curiously ....
Like Satie Vexations ...
i really did not wish to end it ....
i really felt sad to leave the way this time
even with the hard time
the pain
the despairs
once again ....
there was ....
"something"



We could enter by the Misericordia door !



And after the last mass , the pilgrims could visit all the Cathedral secrets for free !!!!





yes we were on top of it !!!


having access to place you can't normally go






and ... it s simply fabulous


Saint Jacques from above









This is Sainte-Foy reliquaire !


Ambroise and our Saint Patron


a very nice lustre


LEAVING DAY - RETURNING TO NORMAL LIFE




Not very happy to go ....





a Sainte-Foy Fresca from the Medieval times



Saint Jacques


and at his feet , a pilgrim , trying to get to him
in a way .... us !


the team is having fun




bye bye Conques


On the way back , we crossed some very nice town
and this waterfall


pretty impressive and romantic


and once again , we could not resist with Ambroise to have some fun times !



Arriving in Rodez , we visited the Cathedral



and .... it is very very impressive










too bad we had only 15 minutes to visit it !







the Rodez city is nice , but .... cold and windy !!!


Near Rodez we visited a Basilica


very nice one


with fantastic vitrails



It is said that Holy Mary 's vail is here
but .... when the Basilica has no one inside , it is not possible to see it !
too bad ... it will be then for next year !!!!!




Guy invited us to his house for a fantastic and delicious lunch !!!




And they prepared us ALIGOT !!!!!!!!





Yes, this year i really did many more pictures, and unlike what i did for the other event , i did not wait months before doing a blog entry , so i could still remember some very fun facts !
I really can't wait to do it next year as well !!!

Maybe this little blog entry will give you also the desire to join us and all the pilgrims on "The Way" to Santiago !!!!!

ULTREIA !!!!!!!!!!!