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ÉLAN

for 9 instruments (Fl., Ob., Cl., Fg., Perc., V., Va, Vc., Cb.)
degree of difficuty: medium-high
duration: 12’30’’ approx.
year of composition: 1984
I performance: Milano, Musica Nel Nostro Tempo, 13.1.1985 – Ens. Garbarino
Edizioni Suvini Zerboni, Milano
(the parts can be hired out)

WORK REGISTERED AT SIAE (Italian Authors and Publishers Association)




The choice of the title was not random. The author bore in mind his reading of Henri-Louis Bergson and his intuition of the elan vital. Conceived in a phase of inventive impetus and of over-taking of previous dusky attitudes the piece could not have been given any other title. The composition was finished on the first day of September, 1984, at the Lido of Venice.

The first movement consists of thirteen bars, each of 7/8 (the quaver corresponds to 40 on the metronome). Its performance requires 'great concentration', which is the translation of the Italian performance marking given at the beginning of the piece: 'Grande concentrazione'. In the second, and last movement, the speed with which the quaver scurries along rises to 96 on the metronome, and is counter-marked with the indication 'con slancio' (with impetus) – èlan. From bar 38 onwards (each bar preserves the 7/8 metre) an Intermezzo begins (here the tempo descends to 50 on the metronome) which is given the duty of suspending the running flow of this movement, which is further  slowed down at bar 48 when the quaver falls to 40 on the metronome. At bar 54 the movement regains its impetus ('con rinnovato slancio' (with renewed impetus)) and concludes with the quaver restored to 96 on the metronome.

Diverse and at times contrasting situations come to life, coinciding with the changes in tempo. The beginning and the conclusion of the second movement contain rhythmic figurations of significant plasticity.