Lost Sounds I – Version B (1978)

Basic Information
Japanese 失われた響き(ロスト サウンズ) I – ヴァージョンB
German Lost Sounds I – Version B
Opus 032 (B)
Year 1978
Category Chamber
Duration 13 min.
Instruments vn, pf, perc
Score information
G. Ricordi & Co. Bühnen - und Musikverlag GmbH
part of Universal Music Publishing
Address Stralauer Allee 1
10245 Berlin
Phone +49 (0)30-52007-08
Fax +49 (0)30-52007-1333
Mail General enquiries: umpg.classical@umusic.com
Rental enquiries: henrik.almon@umusic.com
Sheet music sales worldwide via:
  Music Shop Europe: www.musicshopeurope.com
Sheet music sales in Germany via:
  De Haske Deutschland GmbH
Phone: 0800-334-27-53 (free call in Germany)
Mail: verkauf@dehaskehalleonhard.de

About this Work

«The title, "Lost Sounds," might seem paradoxical, but it is a title which comes from the 1950s and 1960s, when so-called "avant-garde music" tried on a global scale to revive consonance, which had become taboo and thus completely lost. However, since in the present work this is carried out discreetly within its interior, the overall sound creates a faint feeling of harmony.

«In the violin solo the "infinite melody" which circulates through the limited area of extremely high sounds creates a flow of eternal time. In contrast, the dynamic "melody groups" and the two relative "sound groups" cross the infinite melody several times and overlap with it. In other words, in this work I tried to bring infinite and finite musical times as well as harmonic and discordant sounds into collision within a single space and thus bring about a third kind of musical space.

«This work was composed in 1978 as one piece in the "Lost Sounds Series." It was first performed on February 27, 1978 at the Pan-Music Festival 3 in Tokyo, with Isako Shinozaki on violin, Aki Takahashi at the piano, and Sumire Yoshihara and Yasunori Yamaguchi on percussion. The work is dedicated to Isako Shinozaki, who taught me so very much about new ways of playing the violin while I was composing it.»

Maki Ishii (transl. C. Drake)


The violin is a musical instrument that attained perfection at the hands of such masters as Nicolo Amati (1596-1684), Antonio Stradivari (1644-1737), and Giuseppe Antonio Guarneri (1687?-1745) in the seventeenth and eighteenth centuries in Cremona. After that, as everyone is aware, the violin became the most important instrument in the development of Western classical music.

If the eighteenth and nineteenth centuries are taken as the noontide of creative development in the history of Western music, then the twentieth century, of which but little remains, can be compared to the lingering twilight. This time, when but little afterglow, is a good analogy for the modern situation in the creation of new violin music. However, even here in this time of afterglow, it is true that there exists a characteristic type of beauty, albeit of a different sort than that of the time of high noon.

In the violin part of this piece, many of the special violin techniques of the twentieth century are employed; yet in the piano part, the idioms of traditional Japanese koto (a kind of harp) music are fragmentally expressed. This is because behind the 300 years of modern violin music there is an age-old tradition of music itself, which is expressed through the medium of both the traditionality and the modernity inherent in violin music in A Time of Afterglow, in this time of remaining light.

Maki Ishii