A Village of Landscapes

2021-22 – for bassoon, piano, fixed electronics – 60:00

Sheet Music

coming November 2023

  1. Torngat Mountains Sébastien Malette (bassoon), Allison Wiebe (piano) 4:24
  2. Near Moncton Sébastien Malette (bassoon), Allison Wiebe (piano) 3:00
  3. Smoking Hills Sébastien Malette (contrabassoon), Allison Wiebe (piano) 5:48
  4. Near Arctic Bay Sébastien Malette (bassoon), Allison Wiebe (piano) 6:06
  5. Near Wakefield Sébastien Malette (bassoon), Allison Wiebe (piano) 5:15
  6. Great Bear Rainforest Sébastien Malette (bassoon) 5:55
  7. Jasper Sébastien Malette (bassoon) 2:53
  8. East Point Sébastien Malette (bassoon) 3:24
  9. Journey to Bear Cave Mountain Sébastien Malette (bassoon) 2:47
  10. Churchill Sébastien Malette (bassoon), fixed electronics 5:41
  11. Sable Island Sébastien Malette (bassoon), fixed electronics 4:27
  12. Grasslands Sébastien Malette (bassoon), fixed electronics 3:32
  13. Sharbot Lake Sébastien Malette (bassoon), fixed electronics 7:09

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Recording

Album: A Village of Landscapes
Date: May 12, 2023

Musician(s): Sébastien Malette (bassoon), Allison Wiebe (piano)
Producer: Frank Horvat
Location: Port Nelson United Church, Burlington, Canada
Label: I Am Who I Am Records

A Village of Landscapes album - composed by Frank Horvat

Performances

World Premiere of Near Arctic Bay: Jan 27, 2024, Kanata United Church, Ottawa
Sébastien Malette (bassoon)
Gabriel Tam-Poudrier (piano)

Programme Notes

A Village of Landscapes is a 13-piece suite for bassoon inspired by photos of stirring natural landscapes in Canada. Each photo was taken by award-winning nature photographer, Michelle Valberg. The 13 pieces in the suite represent each of the 10 provinces and 3 territories in Canada.

The word “Canada” originates from the Iroquoian word, “Kanata” meaning “village” or settlement. And despite our large size geographically, we are metaphorically a village of various landscapes. We are blessed in this country with such natural beauty. It brings us joy and peace but also inspires us and leaves us awestruck. It is all these feelings that should motivate us to protect the landscapes that encompass our planet. It is such an honour and privilege to use the power of music, through Michelle’s lens, to give this visual beauty another dimension through music.

These 13 pieces have been divided into 3 mini-suites: bassoon with piano, unaccompanied bassoon, and bassoon with electronics. The pieces can be performed individually, as mini-suites or as a whole. I encourage audiences and listeners to take the opportunity to view each of the photos as they listen to the corresponding piece so they can feel the connection, as I did when composing the pieces, between the visual and the aural. It was a wonderful experience to compose this work and I enjoyed a heightened level of appreciation for our natural world thanks to these remarkable photos and the sound of a fabulous musical instrument like the bassoon.

This is how each of the landscapes resonates with me:

With piano
1. Torngat Mountains (Newfoundland and Labrador) – majestic, awe-inspiring
2. Near Moncton (New Brunswick) – happy, cheery, light-hearted
3. Smoking Hills (Northwest Territories) – for contrabassoon, mysterious, bewildering
4. Near Arctic Bay (Nunavut) – peaceful, sparse, inspiring
5. Near Wakefield (Quebec) – invigorating, fresh fall air, swirling of leaves

Unaccompanied
1. Great Bear Rainforest (British Columbia) – calm, slightly mysterious, meditative
2. Jasper (Alberta) – vast, majestic
3. East Point (Prince Edward Island) – constant ebb and flow of the tide washing ashore
4. Journey to Bear Cave Mountain (Yukon) – vast, bright peaks

With fixed electronics
1. Churchill (Manitoba) – barren, eerily tranquil
2. Sable Island (Nova Scotia) – bright, positive, energetic
3. Grasslands (Saskatchewan) – multi-layered
4. Sharbot Lake (Ontario) – gentle, mystical

– Frank Horvat

Commissioned by Sébastien Malette.

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