Olivier MESSIAEN: Quatuor pour la fin du Temps / Quartet for the end of time

(CD, music)

Konvergencie LIVE

recording from the concert in the Klarisky concert hall in Bratislava on 20 September 2019 during the 20th International Festival of Chamber Music Konvergencie

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Composed by Olivier Messiaen (1908-1992) during World War II in the Görlitz prison camp, Quatour pour la fin du temps (Quartet for the End of Time) is inspired by the apocalyptic texts of the 10th chapter of the Revelation of St. John. It was premiered on 14 January 1941, attended by 500 prisoners of war and camp staff. The quartet’s unconventional line-up was born out of the capabilities of the musicians in the camp. We have performed this powerful and timeless work three times at Konvergencie. After an extremely successful production in 2019 in the Klarisky concert hall, which was also praised by professional critics, we decided to rework and publish the work. At the time we began planning the release of this work on CD, our activities and lives were proceeding without any major disruptions. Paradoxically, it is in the current situation of isolation and restrictions caused by the pandemic and, currently, the war in neighbouring Ukraine and the impact of these events on culture, art and society as a whole, that this work seems particularly timely. The piece was orchestrated by long-time Konvergencie – collaborators and leading performers: violin Peter Biely, clarinet Ronald Šebesta, piano Nora Skuta and cello Jozef Lupták.

“I think there is no more appropriate time to play, listen to, or release a CD title featuring the music of Olivier Messiaen’s Quartet for the End of Time than right now, when an aggressive assault on the freedom of autonomous Ukraine by Russian troops and the Putin regime is taking place in Europe. We find ourselves in a time of war that is once again dramatically changing the world. Messiaen wrote this apocalyptic composition during his time in a prisoner of war camp during World War II. And he was probably experiencing fears, disillusionment and grief, and living in a similar existential distress as the Ukrainian people today.”

Jozef LUPTÁK, March 2022

Album includes: music CD, booklet, code for downloading audio files

Composer: Olivier Messiaen (1908-1992)

Interpreters: Ronald ŠEBESTA clarinet, Peter BIELY violin, Jozef LUPTÁK cello, Nora SKUTA piano

Publisher: Konvergencie, 2022

Edition: Konvergencie LIVE

SOZA – BIEM: 1749-009-2

EAN: 8588006338065

recording / recording engineer: Martin Čema, Cobra Sound

mix & mastering: Martin Čema / Jozef Lupták / Andrej Šuba


Olivier Messiaen (1908-1992)

Quatuor pour la fin du Temps (Quartet for the End of Time)

I. Liturgie de cristal (Crystal Liturgy) / 2:37

II. Vocalise, pour l’Ange qui annonce la fin du Temps (Vocalise, for the Angel Announcing the End of Time) / 5:49

III. Abîme des oiseaux (The Abyss of the Birds) / 7:30

IV. Intermède (Interlude) / 1:47

V. Louange à l’Éternité de Jésus (Praise to the Eternity of Jesus) / 8:23

VI. Danse de la fureur, pour les sept trompettes (Dance of Wrath, for the Seven Trumpets) / 6:22

VII. Fouillis d’arcs-en-ciel, pour l’Ange qui annonce la fin du Temps ( Celestial Rainbow for the Angel Announcing the End of Time / Tangle of Rainbows, for the Angel Announcing the End of Time) / 8:02

VIII. Louange à l’Immortalité de Jésus (In Praise of the Immortality of Jesus) / 10:49


Olivier MESSIAEN: Quatuor pour la fin du Temps / Quartet for the end of time

SKU 01111 Category