Press: Press Features

July 7, 2016
Preservation: An Interview with Pierre-Laurent Aimard

"Traditionally, our artistic culture is not based on imitating or inheriting models, but on transforming them. Depending on the period, there are more or less references to the past, and more or less need for new dimensions, new modernism. The period when Messiaen composed this music, after World War II, was a moment of great avant-garde activity. We don’t live in an era like that at all. But history changes all the time, it is made of waves and breaks and unexpected moments, where the mix of old and new is always balanced differently.”

March 18, 2016
Boulez and Harnoncourt, So Different, Yet More Alike Than They Realized

Their developments can be linked to the irrevocable caesura of war. “Europe had been destroyed, and had to be rebuilt completely — the cultural dimension,” Mr. Aimard said. “One needed avant-gardists; one needed people who would be revolutionary and redefine this world."

March 8, 2016
Pierre-Laurent Aimard on life with the Messiaens

"It seems to me that for such essential dimensions in life like belief or our relation to the world or cosmos, we should try every day to make a kind of tabula rasa with all our life experiments, all that we read, that we listen to and what we learn – especially in a relative world like ours where we don't consider there to be one dominant country or one truth. I think each of us should make his own alchemy and find his own way. And in this case, one piece couldn't be the absolute key for leading a life."

March 8, 2016
Pierre-Laurent Aimard: adventure in piano mysticism

Aimard has been closely associated with some of the giants of modernist composition. He studied at the Paris Conservatoire with Messiaen’s pianist wife Yvonne Loriod — for whom the composer had earlier written Vingt Regards — and became a renowned interpreter in his own right of Messiaen’s piano music. At 19 he was invited by Pierre Boulez to be the piano soloist with his Ensemble InterContemporain. His formidable repertoire includes work by the leading figures of music’s avant-garde, including Karlheinz Stockhausen, Elliott Carter and Gyorgy Ligeti.