Théâtre du Châtelet

Com que voz, the fado of Stefano Gervasoni

With Cristina Branco & Frank Wörner

Performed by the singer Christina Branco, the baritone Frank Wörner, and the Ensemble Modern, this creation is a unique meeting of the oral tradition of popular songs and the extraordinary writing of a composer based on the expressivity of the fado.

"Com que voz chorarei meu triste fado." Luís Vaz de Camões

Cristina BrancoIn Com que voz (With Which Voice) traditional fados by Amália Rodrigues are interspersed with the sonnets of Luis Vaz de Camões. The twelve striking moments when the work returns to the fado are embellished with energy; the vocal versatility of the masculine part is performed by his feminine other.

Two traditional trios can be found at the heart of the Ensemble Modern: the Portugese guitar, the Spanish guitar, and the bass, and their modern couterparts - the viola, the accordeon, and the dulcimer. Stefano Gervasoni has invented a unique drama where the melody is endowed with a sophisticated accomagnement, combining instrumental timbers and electronic ornaments. The unique relationship between the two series and the two voices creates dramantic changes in perspective, carrying with it rumors of Lisbon, of the ocean, of the wind.

"Nostalgia of utopia, the past and the future, the infinite of the West (the ocean) and the story of the East combined - all of Europe was behind Portugal." Stefano Gervasoni


  • Stefano Gervasoni Com que voz, based on the sonnets of Luís Vaz de Camões and the fados of Amália Rodrigues
    Commissioned by IRCAM-Centre Pompidou/Casa da Música/Ensemble Modern/Radio France, French Premiere


Cristina Branco, fado
Frank Wörner, baritone
Ensemble Modern
Franck Ollu, conductor
IRCAM Computer Music Design Thomas Goepfer

An IRCAM, Casa da Música (Porto), Ensemble Modern, Théâtre de la Monnaie (Bruxelles), Maerzmusik (Berlin), and Konzerthaus Berlin production. Co-organized by IRCAM and the Théâtre du Châtelet.
With the support of the réseau Varèse, supported by the  European Union's Culture 2000 program. With the support of the Jean-Luc Lagardère Foundation, privileged sponsor for innovation at IRCAM, the Calouste Gulbenkian Foundation, the Institut Camões à Paris, the Caixa Geral de Depósitos and the Sacem.

Photo: Cristina Branco © DR

Wednesday, June 11, 2008, 8:30pm / Théâtre du Châtelet

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Day by day / June, 2008