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Nuits Adieux (Nights Farewell) (1996)

Nuits Adieux (Nights Farewell)

Dans l’air
de la terre
au noir la lumière
et la crache
dans l’air
la nuit rêche jusqu’aux bords
des arbres
dans la terre
es venue
ont poussé
les herbes, les pentes
lumière, les
dans l’herbe
de la terre
au noir les grains les vagues
de la lumière
et les crachent
dans l’herbe la nuit réelle jus-
qu’au bord
des arbres
sous la terre
Nuit, c’est cela
de noir reverend la lumiére n’est
que pour le définir
la nuit première pécéda le jour
Jacques Rouband, Échanges de la lumiére
Adieu, granit, tu deviendras fleur; adieu, fleur, tu deviendras colombe;
adieu, colombe, tu seras femme; adieu femme, tu seras souffrance;
adieu, homme, tu seras croyance; adieu, vous qui serez tout amour et prière.

Nuits Adieux (Nights Farewell)

In the air
wrenches itself free from the earth
into darkness
and spits it
into the air
Night harsh in the ground
up to the edge
of the trees
have come
have thrust
the grasses, the slopes
lights, the
- -
In the grass
the grain the waves
of light
cling to the earth in the dark
and spit them out
onto the grass
Real night
up to the edge
of the trees
beneath the ground
- -
Night is just that
holy head of hair light is only there
to define it
thus did the first night
give way to day

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Kaija Saariaho is a prominent member of a group of Finnish artists who are making a worldwide impact. She studied in Helsinki, Fribourg and Paris.

At IRCAM, Saariaho developed techniques of computer-assisted composition and acquired fluency in working on tape and with live electronics. This experience influenced her approach to writing for orchestra, with its emphasis on the shaping of dense masses of sound in slow transformations. Significantly, her first orchestral piece, Verblendungen (1984), involves a gradual exchange of roles and character between orchestra and tape. And even the titles of her, linked, pair of orchestral works, Du Cristal (1989) and …à la Fumée (1990) suggest her preoccupation with colour and texture. Although much of her catalogue comprises chamber works, she has turned increasingly to larger forces and broader structures, such as Orion (2004), Laterna Magica (2008), Circle Map (2008).

The detailed notation using harmonics, microtonaly and detailed continuum of sound extending from pure tone to unpitched noise – all features found in one of her most frequently performed works, Graal Théâtre for violin and orchestra (1994). Her catalogue also includes Aile du songe (2001), Notes on Light (2006), D’OM LE VRAI SENS (2010), Maan Varjot (2014). In 2015, Gerald Finley and Los Angeles Philharmonic Orchestra, conducted by Gustavo Dudamel, premier True Fire for baritone and orchestra.

From later nineties, Saariaho has turned to opera, with outstanding success: L’Amour de Loin (2000), Adrian Mater (2006), Emilie (2010) and the oratorio La Passion de Simone (2006). Her opera Only the Sound Remains was premiered in March 2016 at The Dutch National Opera. Other performances will follow in Paris, Helsinki, Madrid and Toronto.

Saariaho has claimed the major composing awards: Grawemeyer Award, Wihuri Prize, Nemmers Prize, Sonning Prize, Polar Music Prize. In 2015 she was the judge of the Toru Takemitsu Composition Award.

Kaija Saariaho’s harp concerto Trans was premiered in August 2016 by Xavier de Maistre and The Tokyo Symphony Orchestra, conducted by Ernest Martinez-Izquierdo at the Suntory Hall, Tokyo. 

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Honoré de Balzac (born Honoré Balzac,[1] 20 May 1799 – 18 August 1850) was a French novelist and playwright. The novel sequence La Comédie humaine, which presents a panorama of post-Napoleonic French life, is generally viewed as his magnum opus.

Taken from Wikipedia. Read more here.

Read or download La Comédie humaine for free here on Gutenberg Press, or listen to it on audiobook here on LibriVox.

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