Take my breath away (6')
for flute and piano, 2018
What is it that we call ‘breathtaking’? Usually we say this of something that thrills us, an exciting experience that overwhelms us with beauty and grandeur. Unfortunately, there’s more in life that could even literally ‘take our breath away’, such as violence of any kind.
This piece was commissioned by Natalia Jarząbek, principal flute of the Kraków Philharmonic, and pianist Emmy Wils to commemorate 100 years of Polish independency. The end of World War I and thus the destruction of its neighbouring powers allowed Poland to remerge after more than a century of oppression. Indeed, for 123 years the Polish people’s breath was brutally taken away.
Furthermore, Natalia’s Infinity Project focuses on the use of circular breathing, a technique rarely mastered by flutists. It seems as if also the flutist’s breath is taken away...
This piece has been recorded on their CD during the Summer of 2018 in Krzysztof Penderecki’s European Music Centre in Lusławice and is released in September 2019 by the Polish label DUX. More info regarding the Infinity Project is to be found on their website: www.fluteinfinity.com/home
Commissioned by and dedicated to Natalia Jarząbek (principal flute Kraków Philharmonic, Poland) and Emmy Wils (piano, Belgium)
Premiere by Jacqueline Berndt & Emmy Wils, 1st of March 2018, Belgian Music Days (Leuven, Belgium)
Further performances: Teatr w. Krakowie im. Juliusza Slowackiego (Poland, September 2019); Festival Univseritario de Flauta Transversa (Mexico, July 2020)
Recorded in Krzysztof Penderecki’s European Music Centre in Lusławice. Released by label DUX, September 2018.