2222 – 4220 – Timp. – 14-12-10-8-6

Premiered by the Resident Orkest on April 22nd, 2022 – Amare, Den Haag

This piece has been writen for the Residentie Orkest for the ‘One Minute Symphony’ project in 2022. It was inspired by an interview with author Nisrine Mbarki, whom I met during the creative stages of the piece.
During our conversation, the literary nature of our topic led us to discuss about the more general notion of decision making in creating a narrative, and I got fascinated by the choices authors need to make, particularly in thinking about the stories that they decide not to tell.
These untold stories become the echoes of potentialities to be discovered, evoke past events, or events that could be yet to come, but that will never really be developped in the present course of events, not be told in the current story.

This ‘Last Echo of the Shimmering Song of a Mignight Wind’ (Dernier Écho du chant éclatant d’un vent de minuit) has been composed thinking about all those ideas, details, themes and narrative arcs that are untold, hidden behind every choice of harmony, motive, rest…

fl, cl, bn – hn, tp, tbn – mar, vib – Str.quart.

Charles Baumstark · In medias res

It was clear to me, from the beginning of my work on this piece, that it would be called either « In medias res », literally meaning « in the midst of things », or more simply « Concertino pour douze instrumentistes ». The first one was describing the concept/idea of the opening of the piece, and its logical development, while the second would only describe it as the single short movement of a concert of some kind.

In medias res refers to a narrative procedure that opens the work in the middle of the plot, and completing the backstory via the use of dialogues, flashbacks, etc…
Eventually, I decided to use both, the descriptive title becoming not only the subtitle for the piece, but also a clear indication of what the ‘story will be about’.

fl, alt.sax – Hn, Bb tp, Tbn – Pno – 1Perc. – 2vn, vla, clo, cb.

Premiered by the Glasgow New Music Expedition at the 2019 Plug! Festival.

I recently realized that my past as a mathematician working in topology has greatly influenced the way I write. In topology, the mathematician is interested in observing the development of structures, sets, ensembles, from the point of view of their properties. I use symmetry mainly in two different ways. First, I use it to elaborate the structures of my pieces – in Jeu, the entire structure generates that symmetry axis which provides an inner stability and beauty. Furthermore symmetry in the forms of rhythm and pitch occurs in the development of musical motives, here almost in the form of a playful game.

fl, cl – crotales, vibraphone, grand casa – 8,8,6,4,2.
Sinfonietta version premiered by the RSNO Alchemy Ensemble at the 2018 Plug! Festival.
Special Prize of the BMIMF 2019 Composition Competition (Busan, South Korea)

This fantasy is based on reality. It is an invitation to listen to our inner voice.

Awakening from void. – First cognitive dissonances.
The inner voice rises and calls the conscious mind.
The conscious mind arises.
Theme. – First movements. – Life.
First doubts. – Action takes over doubt.
First euphoria. – The conscious mind flourishes.
Violent cognitive dissonances.
Struggles. – Fights.
Melancholia. – The inner voice stops answering. – The conscious mind falls silent. – Wandering.
Awakening of the conscious mind. – It calls the inner voice, it answers.
Ecstasy in Harmony.