The use of text and voice (speaking and singing parts) in a musical fabric can follow two opposite but complementary models : From a “theatrical” manner that can underline a meaning, from relatively limited information (e.g. verist operas) to an extremely subtle interpretation whose meaning implies a rich network of relations, at least within the ambiguity of an established system (e.g. certain lieder by Schubert), there are many productions that serve (use) more or less of the information contained in the words or lyrics.
In this Cantate it is the internal construction of each stanza, the tone and its intentions, its resonances, that stimulated the way it was written.

In this work I made use of what I called “time ambitus” in the chamber concerto Transmutations ; each sequence observes a ratio of duration to tempo, but instead of these tempi and durations following a golden rule permutated by two (Transmutations), they are chosen in relation to the space suggested by the text, the place demanded by the poem.
It is a sort of hyper-permutation of the golden rule.
This produces sequences that have sometimes the same duration, but different speeds and pulsations. Certain events are broken, filtered by this “speed” parameter.

The directional dimension of the development (its possible anticipation in time) is therefore totally determined by the organization of the text ; certain structures in the background of the “written poem” come forward in the musical production.
In this text there is also a structural constant that is noticeable from the first line :
“Entweder…oder” ; “either…or”, that is, an rapidly alternating black – white, resonant – not resonant, etc…that models the meaning from the beginning to the end ; this opposition is presented musically, first in a very simple manner at the beginning of the work in very jagged phrases played by brass and percussion instruments, contrasted by more flowing and harmonious passages by the piano and the harp (resonant – not resonant). Later in the piece this duality is expressed by a simultaneous superposition of two tempi (and therefore two different instrumental groups) (“Aus Jovialität, als auch ...., von Klugheit... von sich selbst”).

Other oblique or transposed forms also serve to highlight the meaning of the words, their movements interwoven in the musical context.

Here the musical identity is centred not on a permanent polarization (the role of the themes or even the melodic motifs that “weave” time), but on all the components that come into play at the very moment of the poetic-musical text’s enunciation, in such a way that the “theoretically equally probable” material can be deduced during the progress of the composition. Certain elements will be eliminated, others transformed ; the polarity of any given parameter will be paired to a fundamental idea of the text.

The eventual fusion of poem and music can be found in the flow of meaning, the motor of expression, more than in what is here an aphoristic realization of a poetic intention, the French translation offering but an approximation.

Denis Cohen