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Friedrich Cerha: 4 Paraphrasen

  • for oboe, violoncello and piano
  • Duration: 11’30”
  • Instrumentation details:
  • Composer: Friedrich Cerha
  • Dedication: für Heinz Holliger

Work introduction

When I have previously used quotes in my work, they have often created allusions that only I can understand. In my Four Paraphrases for oboe, cello and piano, written to a request by Heinz Holliger for a specific programme, I have made my quotes clearly audible for everyone.

It was appealing to me, by combining the originals with new elements, to show another side – in my opinion an unexpected side – of the original material. In the first Paraphrase it is the B-minor Scherzo by Chopin, in the second the Rigoletto-arias by Verdi, in the third the well-known Humoresque by Dvořák, and in the fourth a mix of Johann Strauß, Offenbach, the Marseillaise, the Internationale and Lohengrin.

Perhaps the recognition of something distorted within the banal can be a source of pleasure, although it is very clear to me that by their technically proximity to my chansons from the 1980s they amount to a borderline case within my oeuvre.

Friedrich Cerha


World première

Kartause, Ittingen (CH)
Main soloists:
Heinz Holliger, ob; Christoph Richter, vc; András Schiff, pno

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