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Erkki-Sven Tüür: 7 Etudes in Pictures (2010)

Original title: Erkki-Sven Tüür: 7 etüüdi piltides

Erkki-Sven tüür: Symphony on 7 Motifs

Documentary Duration 77:00



But it is if the darkness lights up to glow
when you are looking at it like this,
as there is very bright in there.
Tõnu Õnnepalu, "Paradise"

Rīgas Laiks
Aug 20th 2012

Jānis Petraškevics talks to Erkki–Sven Tüür, one of the internationally best known Estonian composers.

RL: You have chosen to settle on the tranquil island of Hiiumaa. Have the peculiarities of this location influenced your musical thinking?
Tüür: Yes, could be so. I have been so many times thinking about my new work while walking on the seashore. You find a kind of sameness there – like the Chinese Tao – it’s the same, but always changing. The sea is never the same. You see the surface – there are so many components! The waves... the wind comes suddenly and makes the cross-waves, then the light comes, makes it glittering... So the texture is always like this (shows) – there are some huge, low flows which are very slow, and some very fast actions... You can find the same things in my musical textures. When you listen to some of my recent pieces, you certainly can detect that there is a lot of wave-form development going on. You can even say that there is the fractal geometry ideology behind it: the same idea – some melodic or rhythmic motif – shows itself in ever bigger and bigger scale, so the particles are quite organically linked together. Sometimes I can detect it afterwards when analyzing what I have done – then I find that I am following this kind of spiral development again. It’s different in details, but the general shapes are somehow the same. It comes to me very naturally, and I don’t want to abandon something that comes from the very depth of my nature – not reproducing it mechanically but finding always a new way to work with it. And perhaps the flow of nature... When you see how it slowly wakes up in spring, how the wind plays with leaves on trees, or how light is changing in winter and sun slowly moves just a little bit above the horizon and you have these branches without leaves, and how this texture is changing slowly... Yes, definitely staying there in the middle of nature has affected my thinking. It’s not so much that I am painting the nature with sounds, no. It’s little details that I have described which could be perhaps structural analogs in my music. At the same time, I have to say that I like extremes. So, as much as I enjoy to be there in my studio in this lonely place, I feel that a couple of times in a year I need to visit big cities and be in the middle of urbanistic milieu.
Erkki-Sven Tüür, http://www.erkkisven.com/interviews (18.02.2014).

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