L'aiguille qui fait déborder le vase, Op. 30

Creation date: June 15, 2019
Concert Band
Publisher:Hafabra Music

Picc. (+ Fl.), 2 Fl. (+ Alto Fl.), Ob., Eng.Hn.,
2 Bsns, 2 Eb Cl. (+ Ab Cl.),
Bb Cl. I-II-III, Alto Cl., Bass Cl., Cb. Cl.,
2 A. Sax., T. Sax., Bar. Sax.,
4 Hns, 2 Cnts, 3 Tpts, 3 Trbs, 2 Euph.,
2 Tubas, Cb., Hp, Pno (+ Cel.), 4 Perc.

Duration: from 00:30 to any time, usually 10:00
Level: Grade 6


Le cadavre exquis boira le vin nouveau.

L’aiguille qui fait déborder le vase is a short tribute to the French word games, puns, absurdities and language slips. The title itself is a misunderstanding between 2 well-known expressions: « the drop of water that has made the vase overflow » and « looking for a needle in a haystack », that made my title: « the needle that has made the vase overflow ». In fact, the needle and the overflow are described in the score, look for them! Like the game of « Exquisite Corpse » (from the French original expression « cadavre exquis »), these 11 miniatures, with sometimes a very short duration (2 seconds for one of them!), have to be played in the wished order by the conductor; furthermore each miniature is strictly independent from one other.

Example: IX, V, I, II, IV, II, VI, IX, IXA, IV, IV,… It is thus possible de repeat some miniatures, even make one of them an ostinato. They must be played attacca, without any pause, except when indicated (G.P., pause), and depending on percussion and other instrument changement questions. Finally, it is possible to play only one miniature: wink, punctuation,… as of the performer’s taste!

These miniatures could also be used as materials for Soundpainting performances.

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L’aiguille qui fait déborder le vase
by the Royal Symphonic Band of the Belgian Guides, under baton Yves Segers

Concert Band