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"Midi aux champs - Pastorale" for orchestra

August 2014

Maurice Journeau has composed for the orchestra. Either directly, or writing an orchestra version from a favourite work (originally intended for the piano or the violin).

Midi aux Champs (Pastorale) op.27 was a piano work the composer was very fond of. He played it very often. This "Pastoral" (its subtitle) was composed in Verneuil sur Avre, in Normandy (a french western region)on July 1943, this Summer month being particularly hot. And in a cottage called "Les Champs" (The Fields) because surrounded by wide corn-fields. The orchestra version followed quickly, endowed with hot, glowing sonorities. We find there the love for Nature and its healing power, the joy of being on holidays in the open air, the hot, heavy atmosphere of Summer and its burning sun especially at noon.

This orchestra work just published by "Editions Henry Lemoine"(now owning "Editions Combre", Journeau's previous publisher) is without great technical difficulties. Yet it requires numerous colours. The conductor of the orchestra will act indeed a little like a painter of a still picture in which the farm cattle is in motion through the fields, slowly going afar from the foreground until its final disappearance into the background's hot mist. A sunny, joyful, bucolic work.(Ch.Virlet-Journeau)