06/02/1999 - Koln (Germany) - Trio Recherche
After Stephane Mallarmé's death, a red cardboard envelope was found among his papers, containing 210 small sheets (12.5 x 7.5 cm), covered in writing made in a light, rapid hand in pencil, and today almost invisible. On the back of folio 6, noticeably smaller than the others, are three words that have taken nearly 30 years to decipher: fureur contre informe.
This unfinished work, that resulted from the same suffering that also halted its progress, was written following the death of Anatole Mallarmé (16 July 1871 - 8 October 1879), the poet's son. It is a tombeau, a poetic consolation, searing and laconic, devoid of all preciosity. It is as though the work was asphyxiated by the personal implications, by the vehement yet pitiful "I" which lacerates the poetic substance and finally condemns the work to death. In a series of thirteen linked fragments, the string trio takes up the three ordres, the three non-chronological moments that Mallarmé imagined for this abstract play with three characters (mother, father and son).
I. The instant of the revolt and scream, setting off the illness and death that strikes / rapid tempo, refrain, fugitive strident sounds
II. The time of the illness, the moment of the son's death, the burial (assumption of the father) / coloured silence
III. Resolution, poetic project, attempt at spiritual triumph / cantilena, funeral song
The part that is impossible to write comes in the middle of Mallarmé's projected poem, where the fragment and sketch become moments in a poetic act founded in incompleteness. In these papers Mallarmé often evokes things left in suspense or unconfirmed, rather like the registration of some internal music which cannot be played to anyone else - "missing the sublime aim" (fol. 105). The poem was left bare. At this point the abrupt break and lack of resolution revealed to Mallarmé that the reality of thought, the irreducible kernel of the planned poem, what is resolutely modern, had been absorbed in sorrow, but remained ever watchful, with nothing definite to be heard.
Folio 61: so gone, and an empty wind that blows (there, the void ? modern)
Folio 57: and I'll perhaps nothing - (confirmed) on death
allowed to hear simply - in the space of "he died of I II"
Fureur contre informe was commissioned by the WDR and the first performance was given by the Recherche Trio in Cologne on 6 February 1999.
1 CD aeon, AE0106, Mes béatitudes
Born in Torteron, in central France, in 1958, Gérard Pesson studied at the Sorbonne, where he obtained his doctorate with a thesis on The Aesthetics of Aleatoric Music. In addition, at the Paris Conservatory, he studied composition with Ivo Malec, orchestration with Marius Constant [...]