sexta-feira, julho 24, 2015

Eduardo Lourenço's Musical Jottings: “Tempo da Música, Música do Tempo” by Eduardo Lourenço, Barbara Aniello (editor)


Published 2012.



“Nós não pensamos nada, não há um homem propriamente pensante: nós ouvimos.”
(We don’t think at all, Man is not a really thinking Being: we listen.”

With one of his usual aphorisms, Eduardo Lourenço is able to sum-up not only his long coexistence with Music, but also his attitude of being a permanent listener. But listening to what?

Eduardo Lourenço is one of the few original thinkers able to hear the other, be it the President, or a taxi driver. His unquenchable thirst to devour everything on his path, made the act of listening to music a recurrent activity, maybe even more important than speech itself.

Unable to write about Lourenço’s writing, I humbly stand aside to make room for his own voice (my own loose translations from Portuguese into English).

“Ora nada mais propício do que a música para justificar o abismo que há entre senti-la e compreendê-la. É evidente que a maioria dos ouvintes de Bach não compreende a sua música: sente-a, faz um todo com ela no momento em que a ouve e nada mais. Mas isso acontece-lhe com toda a expressão musical. Sentir é o grau ínfimo da apropriação: é só um ouvir com os sentimentos possíveis de prazer, desprazer, deleite ou aborrecimento, em suma, um ouvir gostando ou não gostando.” (página 60)
(Well, nothing lends itself so well for the justification of the monumental gap between listening and feeling than music. It’s quite evident that the majority of the Bach listeners do not understand his music: they feel it, make a whole with it when listening to it, and nothing more. But that happens with all musical expression. Feeling is the smallest degree of ownership: it’s just a listening with the available feelings of pleasure, displeasure, delight, or annoyance, all in all, a like-it-or-not listening moment.” (page 60)

“Concerto de Bartók: quanto mais o ouço mais me convenço de que a líquida angústia de um mundo à procura do seu explodido coração encontrou na sua música a estrada real, a pura busca sincopada e em êxtase que nos dará o improvável futuro onde morte e vida serão apenas sonho.” (página 67)
(Bartók’s concerto: the more I listen to it, the more I convince myself that the liquid anguish of a world looking for its blasted heart has found in its music the real road, the pure syncopated search and in exaltation will give us the improbable future wherein death and life will be only dream.” (page 67)

“A fascinação da música reside no facto de ela tornar a palavra humana uma decadência e uma degradação. Ser homem torna-se então uma melancolia” (página 113)
(The fascination with music lies in the fact that it makes the human word a decadence and degradation. Then being human makes us melancholic.” (page 113)

“Aquilo que eu queria ser e não tenho coragem de ser, encontro nas suites de Bach”
“What I wanted to be, but I’m not brave enough to be, I find in the Bach Suites.”

"Certamente se um dia voltar para Deus, a nenhuma outra coisa o deverei senão a estas estradas de uma melancolia lancinante que, desde o canto gregoriano até Messiaen, devoram em mim o sentimento da realidade do mundo visível."
(If one day I return to God, if nothing else, I'll owe it to these roads of a heartrending wistfulness that from the Gregorian chant up to Messian, devour the feeling of reality of the visible world.)

A last word to the wonderful work of Barbara Aniello, a very able Italian researcher in music, art history, and musicology. This “tailoring and sewing” of Eduardo Lourenço’s manuscript pages must have been a real nightmare. For our utter delight, she was able to put into perspective all of these musical moments.)

The more I read Lourenço, the more I realize that his texts are not black and white, because his writing his mainly poetic even when he’s writing in a sort of prose.



(Between Wagner and Mahler; facsimile of a manuscript currently in the Gulbenkian collection)

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