chapter  10
23 Pages

Claude Vivier at the end

ByJONATHAN GOLDMAN

General features and reception The Quebec composer Claude Vivier (1948-1983) is one of the most important creators of concert music in Canada, and has come to be considered one of the most significant and original composers of the last quarter of the twentieth century. His highly personal style in emblematic works like Lonely Child (1980) and Journal (1977) fuses many of the dominant currents of twentieth-century art music, from the serialist thought inherited from his teachers Gilles Tremblay and karlheinz Stockhausen to the techniques associated with Spectral composition. Like other composers of his generation working in Montreal at the same time (including John Rea, José Evangelista and Walter Boudreau), he had a deep and durable fascination with non-European musical cultures, particularly those of the Indian subcontinent, Southeast Asia and especially the island of Bali. Works by Vivier are as likely to have names of Asian locales in their titles as a piece by Messiaen is likely to bear a species of bird in its name (for example, Zipangu – the name Marco Polo used to refer to Japan – Bouchara, Shiraz, Pulau Dewata – the Balinese nickname for the island of Bali, etc.).3