Prof. Pierre Alexandre Tremblay wins Prix Opus «Disque de l’année»

We congratulate Prof. Pierre Alexandre Tremblay whose recent CD release, La Marée, was awarded the prestigious Prix Opus ‘Disc of the Year’ (Disque de l’année) by the Conseil Québécois de la Musique (CQM) in an awards ceremony on February 1st.


[Photo courtesy of empreintes DIGITALes]

Released on the empreintes DIGITALes label, this double-CD of mixed music incorporates performances by renowned musicians Peyee Chen (sop.), Jean-François Laporte, Sarah Nicolls (pno) and Heather Roche (cl.).

Of the album itself, PA says:

All the pieces on this album are mixed-music where the soloist has a complex dynamic with its antagonist, the loudspeaker: a dialogue all made of power games. This uneven relationship is reminiscent of the fragility of sandcastles and other human constructions with their daily facing of the patience of the elements. Are these ephemeral joys many revenges over the ineluctable? [La Marée, liner notes]

The compositions were realised in Huddersfield University’s own electronic music studios during June and July 2013 and mastered by Dominique Bassal in Montréal (Québec, Canada) during August 2013.

Meanwhile, PA informs us that his sabbatical year in Berlin continues apace. Last week, his music featured at Berlin’s CTM Festival, the conclusion of his stay as Edgar-Varère-Gastprofessor of Electronic Music Composition at the studios of the Technische Universität Berlin.


[Pierre Alexandre Tremblay, laptop and electric bass]

PA’s own feedback from the event has been extremely positive. He particularly praised the wide-ranging artistic programming of the festival made it the ideal opportunity to showcase the breadth of his music. Drawing a large audience of curious and open-minded listeners, the venue was also praised. HAU2 is a live-sounding black-box, allowing the seating informally arranged and yet to cut the space with minimal, attention-focusing lighting.

chen[Collaborators Heather Roche, left, and Peyee Chen, stage]

In the event, PA was joined by collaborators (and long-time friends of CeReNeM) Heather Roche (bass clarinet) and Peyee Chen (soprano) and together they presented a set of three pieces, with bass and laptop improvisations from PA himself serving as ‘gelling material’ (to use the the composer’s own terms) between the more composed components.

[nureinwortgenügtnicht – movement I, extract]

La rupture inéluctable (‘The inevitable rupture’) opened the set, fantastically performed by Roche. PA told us that starting a set in an electronic music festival with an acoustic bass clarinet was ‘risky,’ but allowed a strong stage presence to form before being followed by the premiere of nureinwortgenügtnicht (‘onlyonewordisnotenough’), PA’s new electronic work, with the composer himself at the mixing desk. Chen joined the stage during the slow departing gestures of the electronics, performing Tremlay’s short chamber opera for soprano and electronics.

group[More audio excerpts are available on soundcloud. Try nureinwortgenügtnicht extracts 2 and 3]

Links to reviews:

Elecrocd [publisher] compilation of reviews [French/English]

Kindamusik review [Dutch]

M’/ Magazyn review [Polish]