Michael Finnissy -‘Ének’

Posted on June 12th, 2011 by


 Michael Finnissy – ‘Ének’

Peter Sheppard Skaerved-Violin (Stradivari 1734 ‘Habeneck’)

Live recording – London 9th March 1999

Click on SONG 13 

Michael Finnissy listening. London 2009. Photo; Richard Bram

“Visiting Budapest to give a couple of concerts with Chris Newman. After the concert at the Youung Artists Club, we go out to eat. It’s well after midnight-this is still ‘Soviet Republics’ time…we find a restaurant; we are the only people there except the waiters and a group of musicians; violin, double-bass and cimbalon. It takes forever to order and get the food, so we do sign language and broken Hungarian mixed in with German to the musicians. They are thrilled that we are musicians too and play us the most exquisite performance (their ‘private’ and ‘special’numbers)-real folk music-not the café variety act (all souped up). They play for hours, We get pleasantly drunk. So do they, we all drink and sing. Everybody finally goes to bed at five o’clock-ish; my head is too full of stuff (music?) to sleep. But tunes, types of motifs, scraps. Many of the gestures drop into place when a few months later I write ‘Ének’, trying to catch a little of that ‘Voice’ (talking, laughing, crying, singing) of the violin on that night…”

Michael Finnissy, ,” Letter to Peter Sheppard Skaerved April 2002

 ‘Ének’ was inspired by Finnissy’s visit to Hungary:

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