Poetic and singing ballads, composed to folk texts and poems by well-known authors, will sound during the opening concert of the chamber series at the National Forum of Music. The star of the evening will be Olga Pasichnyk, a singer who finds herself equally well in the operatic and lyrical repertoire.
Music and poetry seem to be created for each other, but in this relationship there is no lack of feud and jealousy, as in any artistic relationship. Which is more important: word or music? Moreover, we have several performers on the stage, between whom the division of roles is seemingly fixed: the human voice is the protagonist of the concert. But does any instrumentalist want to be only a background for the voice? These are just some of the intriguing nuances and challenges of chamber music that we can discover throughout the season at the NFM.
Olga Pasichnyk, a soprano awarded and celebrated across Europe, will present songs from her native Ukraine arranged by composers who, like Mykola Lysenko, were also ethnographers collecting folk songs. The second part of the evening will belong to music written to poetry. Stéphane Mallarmé, an outstanding symbolist and decadent, inspired many composers of his time. Maurice Ravel was so impressed by his work that he called the poet an ‘exorcist of language’ who ‘released from prison winged thoughts and unconscious daydreams’. Ernest Chausson drew from the work of Charles Cros, whose lyrics we may know from the songs of Brigitte Bardot. What the composer and the poet had in common is the fact that they had not associated life with art from the beginning. Chausson graduated in law and started his formal music education quite late, so he had to show a lot of perseverance to achieve a satisfying level of skill. Cros as a poet was fully appreciated only after his death. During his lifetime, he was a satirist on the stages of Parisian cabarets, but above all he was an inventor, scientist, and chemistry teacher. His Eternal Song, which charmed Chausson, is a declaration of love towards an absent object of feeling. In contrast, Camille Saint-Saëns was the only one in this group who drew inspiration from the poetry of a woman – Anna de Noailles, a French writer and journalist, Romanian duchess by descent, a socialite of the turn of the 19th and 20th centuries. Saint-Saëns managed to express in music the captivating mood of her poems.
Regardless of whether in our hearts it is music or poetry that takes the first place, the concert will be a good opportunity to explore each of them and, above all, admire their brilliant marriage. The subtle and warm voice of Olga Pasichnyk is said to help stop the everyday rush, to respite and rest. We wish it to all of you!