Compositions Jean-Philippe Collard-Neven
Classical and jazz pianist, composer, improviser
 
 

Composition was my first dream as a musician. I became a pianist a bit “by chance”. The music which fascinated me and which lulled my childhood was primarily film music.Georges Delerue, Philippe Sarde, Ennio Morricone, Antoine Duhamel, Gabriel Yared, Francois de Roubaix, Michel Legrand and so many others. Far from the experimental music -and after all not that far- which I would come to practice later, I found in film music an endless playground in which to project my imaginary world and my emotions. After more than twelve years of assiduous practice of contemporary music, I keep finding in film music the roots of my first musical emotions, and I live incessantly in this great shift between informed art music (does it know more than any other?) of the classical tradition, and a more immediate one, of popular origin. I dream of reconciling the two and honoring this double legacy.
      In the course of these last years, I might have slightly avoided composition in favor of the piano, because dreams are sometimes a bit scary, but I have never ceased to compose, namely for the theater. Sometimes roundabout ways are called for to reach one's goals. And furthermore, music in the theater, as with cinema or dance, evolves in a landscape more barren and free than “pure” music, everything seems possible when music enters a dialogue with other art forms.
       You will find here samples of music composed for the stage between 1994 and 2009. Each one of these often short pieces is a miniature reflecting a fusion with a text, a world an author, a stage director. I love to let myself be touched by these exterior elements in order to create the music which will better correspond to a certain set of things, to find the best suited vibration which will bring through sound what the rest can not express.
       Through the few excerpts you will find here, one of the most personal aspects of my work is manifest. You will also be able to listen to some chamber music and other pieces which I find myself unable to classify into any given category.

 
Coming out soon under the label SUB ROSA, a CD including music for the stage composed between 1994 and 2009 as well as the music from the documentary film L' Or Bleu (The Blue Gold)
 
music for an absent film
 
     

Music for the theater

StibJules and Zoul'Epouvantable petite princesse (The Dreadful little princess)Molly au château (Molly at the castle) l'Installé (the Resident) Molly à vélo (Molly on a bycicle) la Fée au Cerf-volant (the fairy with the kite)AbracadabramalfoutuDeclownestrationl'Ogrelet (the litle Ogre) Mardi (Tuesday) le Soleil dans la cheminée (The sun in the chimney)Gallilée (Galileo)
 
Documentary Music
l'Or bleu (The blue gold)
 
Chamber Music
Amers, vue du ciel... (piano trio)Toi qui cours avec les loups (string quartet)
 
Various
Petit Lou la Leçon de chant (dramatique radio) (The singing lesson (radio play))
 
In the making...
Piece for solo piano, creation in Montreal the next october 15th at the Nouveau Cinema Festival. Reprise in mid-november at the contemporary music festival of Lima and on november 17th at the Composers Forum in the Espace Senghor of Brussels.
 
Music for the theater
 
stib  
Stib

Text: Geneviève Damas
Mise en scène: Janine Godinas

Acting: Isabelle Defossé and Geneviève Damas

Creation: August 2009, Spa Festival

They have no car and cross Brussels every day from north to south. One of them has lived there her whole life. The other has just arrived. They don't know each other, but every morning, they take the same tram. Inevitably it creates a bond. So then one fine day, when Eva's portable phone is sticking out from her pocket, Magda can't refrain from reprimanding her, warning her that it could easily be stolen. And as Eva does not pay any attention, to prove that she is right, she steals her portable. Thus begins a long “tram-movie” for two solitary clowns.

    STIB

    Eva and Magda

     
   
Jules et Zou  

Jules et Zou (Jules and Zou)
A play for children

Text and mise en scène: Geneviève Damas
Acting: Givanna Caddeddu and Yan-Gaël Monfort

Création: avril 2009, Espace Brueghel (Bruxelles)

It's the story of a little boy named Jules and a little girl named Zou. Jules and Zou live in the same street, the orange tree street, easily recognisable because there are no orange trees in the street. They go to the same school, the chestnut tree school. Jules knows the school well, he goes there since he's a very small boy. As to Zou, she doesn't know the school because she's just arrived with her mum in the neighborhod. One day some gentlemen come to get Zou's mum at work, Zou will have to go live at Jules house for some time...Until Zou's mum can come pick her up. Jules and Zou, it's the story of a friendship.

   Gri-Gri

     
   
épouvantable princesse  
L'épouvantable petite princesse
(the Dreadful little princess)
A play for children


Text: Geneviève Damas
Mise en scène, Ariane Buhbinder

Acting: Sacha Kreme, Chantal Lempereur, Geneviève Damas

Creation: april 2008, CDW (Strépy-Bracquenies)

Here some story!
Not another word! Merely a few scattered letters!
Not the slightest line to hold on to!
The only thing left is a pile of matresses as immaculate as a white page. What to do?
How to know what to play?
What character to play? It's a real nightmare!
However, there's no way around it, she really has to come out the “dreadful Little Princess!”
But how, with a king René and a Queen Irène who have already tried everything?
It seems we are in a great deal of trouble!
What about calling the author? He has to get us out of here!

    Adélaïde and her grannie
     
   
Molly au château  
Molly au château (Molly at the Castle)


Texte and acting: Geneviève Damas
mise en scène: Pietro Pizzuti

creation: august 2007 (Festival de Spa)

"Widow looking for a young girl to keep her company, she must be single, dynamic and with a decent appearance, recommendations desired, guaranteed room and board. Do you think it could suit me? well, I've always liked old people. Not the old math teacher from high school, it was Cromagnon's auntie. I've always liked my grannie, your grannie. And then I'd be useful. I'll let you know Titine, and I kiss you as never before. “

Following the world championships where her team came second, Molly, alias Mary- Odile Savard, gets down from her bicycle and takes two weeks off in New York with her boyfriend Pierrot... just to clear her mind and pursue her career with renewed energy. One fine morning she gets a call from her coach. He just got back the urine and blood test samples taken before the world cup and Molly tested “positive”!Her world falls apart, she decides to drop everything. Bicycle, work and boyfriend. But what will she do with her life from now on? She had the dream of travelling through the world's village at the wheel of a bibliobus. But no space for her. While leafing through the classified adds she finds a tempting work offer....

   L'arrivée au château
     
   
Cajou  

Cajou
A play for teenagers fourteen and up

Text: Patrick Lerch
Mise en scène, Geneviève Damas

Cajou, Mélanie Delva
Tom, Patrice Mincke
Nobody's dog, Luc Fonteyn

In a suburban town, two adolescents coexist, confront each other, seek and reject each other: Cajou and Tom. Two personalities in the process of growing up, chrysalides, almost butterflies, touched by doubt, anger, modesty, desire and love. They carry the dream of leaving their small limited world to discover Australia. Around them prowls the enigmatic presence, at times well meaning, at times terrifying, nobody's dog, a man who decided to give up the world in order to leave differently.


    Cajou


     
   
l'Installé  
L'installé (The Resident)

Text: Alain Spièss
Mise en scène Françoise Spièss

creation: september 2005 (Théâtre Daniel Sorano, Vincennes, France)

One fine day, the resident decides to never again leave his parisian apartement. As the trash bags which he hoards carefully trigger the wrath of the co-owners led in their fight by the terrible concierge madame Trappenier, he will attempt to explain the reasons for his decision. The blank puzzles which represent the greater part of his activities, are similar to the haunting bits of memories which assail him, and to those fragments which he tries to put together to give his life meaning. .Then come out from the past, or his imaginary world, the characters who have haunted his existence. This paradoxically exhilarating text explores family ties, unspoken desires, the bonds we create with others and with death.Humor, insanity, farce and a profound humanity cross paths in this terrifying and hilarious play carried by a chiseled writing style which precludes all pathos.

    Cravatte blues
     
   
Molly à vélo  
Molly à vélo (Molly on a bicycle)

Text and acting by Geneviève Damas
Theater prize- Best Author 2004
Coup de Coeur of the Loire-Atlantique high school students 2006
Finalist of the Labou Tansi prize and the French community Parlement 2006 prize


mise en scène, Pietro Pizzuti

creation: august 2004 (Festival de Spa)

When one is called Molly Savard, born in Saint-Péravy-la-Colombe, bearing the same name as one's aunt who died, in 1956, after eating the mushrooms picked in the forest after school, that what lies in store for you is a BEP sales-merchant action, that your dad has the unfortunate tendancy of comparing you to the youngest daughter of général De Gaulle. It's imperative to find a way out...Quickly!

  La course
     
   
la fée au cerf-volant  
La fée au cerf-volant (The fairy with the kite)
A play for children


Text and mise en scène: Geneviève Damas
Acting: Mélanie Delva, Sandrine Bonjean, Henri Monin ou Boris Stoikoff, Olivier Rosman

création: march 2004

Jonathan is turning seven. He lives alone with his mum. When she works late, granpa comes and tells him stories. However, however... Jonathan is not happy. He is missing dad and grannie to. He wonders where they could have gone. Nobody told him anything. So Jonathan is doing some very hard thinking. What if the solution was to become small again?

   Ouverture
     
   
Abracadabramalfoutu   Abracadabramalfoutu
A play for children


Text: Evelyne Wilwerth
Mise en scène: Geneviève Damas

Acting: Géraldine Schalenborgh, Vincent Logeot

    Final
     
   
déclownestration

Declownestration

Text: Francis Monty
Mise en scène: Geneviève Damas

Acting: Thierry Hellin, Anne-Laure Fabre, Carole Trévoux, Daniel Decot, Valérie D'hondt, Geneviève Damas

Francis Monty's play opens with the sight of six characters collapsed in their armchairs : Ouarch, Fichtre, Zorgha, Rogné, Zouave et Schlurps. They ran out of energy to keep on fighting, to find a place in society. Feeling stuck, they mull over their resentment. However, before, there was a time when they believed they could change the world and accept their human condition:mortal, lonely , penniless and unrecognized- and their faults- all that lacks smoothness, luster and exterior beauty- by creating a circus. They then decide , for the audience, to recreate the birth of that circus, the story of their project, which ended in failure because, unavoidably they got it wrong when it came to money, power, ego and seduction. This recollection will make them stand back on their own feet and give them the strength to depart for imaginary worlds, the moon, there where human understanding, and true encounters hold a prviledged position.

The music for this play was interpreted by the actors, without a recorded support.
     
   
L'ogrelet  
L'ogrelet (The little Ogre)
A Play for children


Text: Suzanne Lebeau
Mise en scène: Valérie Cordy

Acting: Gregory Praet, Geneviève Damas
Manipulation of the Puppets: Leila Fajoumi, Julia Palermo

création: march 2001

It's the story of Simon, a small boy of six who starts school for the first time, as everyone else. But he is so big, his hands are so huge! His mother calls him tenderly “my little Ogre”. Since birth she protects him from himself: no red color in front of his eyes, a vegetarian diet, nothing likely to stir his instincts... Even the trees she planted around the house don't turn red in the fall. She is right to be concerned, for she knows that Simon's father, who left after devouring his six daughters one after the other right after birth, has left him his ogre's nature as a legacy. Simon discovers gradually as he arrives in school that he is different from the others. But he is also brave and daring. Strenghtened by his friendship for his small friend Pamela, and his desire to learn, he will face his destiny by choosing to restrain his bloody instincts. He will go through a series of three tests in order to overcome his predicament forever.

   l'Ogrelet
     
   
Mardi  
Mardi (Tuesday)

Text: Edward Bond
Mise en scène: Sylvain Plouette

création: 1999

"About the title. There's no problem: call it “Tuesday” was the author's note to his translator. “Tuesday” as a title is rather ugly in french, but it's what we need, it's just what I wanted. The title simply means “any day”. Monday sounds heavy, it's the beginning of something, as to saturday and sunday they are equally heavy with meaning, because they represent the end... Tuesday is just right for young characters. “Tuesday becomes interesting from the very fact that at the outset it isn't”. Bond seems determined to making us accept everyday life as the legitimate material of his art and of theater in general. After the everyday life theater of the sixties, nothing new it seems. But let no one be fooled. The sudden irruption of a young defector soldier in his student girlfriend's room, asking her to t hide him, is but a trigger. “Fait divers” or everyday drama, these expressions often disguise the tragic side of an “enlightened” well reasoned world.For the soldier is ready to oppose his conviction of having to leave the military world to the certainties of the other world, that of established order symbolised by the young girl's father.

    Le tango des snipers
     
   
Le soleil dans la cheminée  
Le soleil dans la cheminée
A Play for children


Text and mise en scène: Martine Godard

creation: august 1998 (Festival de Huy)

A roof, a brother and sister, a worm, a chimney... Where are the parents? The dad works... a lot! The mum works to. During the day the children are at school and the parents work. Why is mum no longer at home? The roof top opens, out comes a hand, a leg, a little girl, a peluche, a few feathers, some small boys to. The roof top closes. The great adventure begins. Ben and Nomi are suddenly shipwrecked, landed on the roof of their house. What to do? And how? There is panic and arguments, they play, they get bored, they talk, fight, laugh, play, panic, laugh. But a roof, it's small, even on top of the world, there's no choice but to stay together. Together, far from everything, from school, friends, parents, problems... This unexpected experience isolated Ben and Nomi for a few hours. At the same time, it's long, and maybe welcome. What to say? And how to say it? Lots of laughter, questions, a complicity, an understanding, a will to listen, gradually appear. A new perception of each other surfaces. Something strong and unchangeable has come between them. It won't stop them from going on fighting, having fun and loving each other.

    Ouverture
     
   
Gallilée  
Galilée (Galileo)

Text: Bertold Brecht
Mise en scène: Christian Charlier

Students from the Athénée Royal of Visé

creation: may 1994

Galileo, a great lover of the good life, claims as his own the Danish invention of a lens, thus increasing his meager salary as a teacher. He is eager for both earthly and spiritual pleasures and one of his greatest desires is to fight against superstitions and transmit his knowledge. It's in the Florentine court that he hopes to impose his latest theory: the moon has no light of its own; it is, as the earth, lit by the light of the sun. However, the inquisition having understood the subversive implications of this theory, silences the author. Years latter, Galileo, in spite of being half blind and a prisoner of the Inquisition, manages to write the Discorsi which he hides in a globe. When during a visit, his favorite student learns of its existence, he seems to understand that the retraction was nothing but a deception. But Galileo proves him wrong, he could not have feared retaliation; he asks him to take the Discorsi abroad.

   Prison
     
Documentary music
     
     
 

L'Or bleu (The Blue gold)

Director : Damien de Pierpont
Director of photography : Dominique Henry
Sound : Ludovic Van Pachterbeke, Irvic D’Olivier, Thierry Tirtiaux
Editing : Virginie Messiaen
Sound editing : Ludovic Pachterbeke
Composer : Jean-Philippe Collard-Neven

Produced by : Denis Delcampe – NEED PRODUCTIONS

In coproduction with
CBA (Kathleen de Bethune), RTBF (Annick Lernoud), ARTE (Nadine Lernoud)

With the support of DGCD, federal financial service of the Ministry of Foreign affairs , Exterior Commerce and Cooperation to the Developpement of the Cinema andAudiovisual Center of Belgium's French Community, the Wallon teleditributors, and the Region of Bruxelles-Capitale.

Water is not merchandise like any other: with basis on the problems in Marrakech, this documentary film denounces the privatization of "blue gold". Access to water and its control become fearsome games, the population increase, climatic changes and waste leading to often catastrophic loses. As the World commerce organisation, the World bank or the European Union advocate the privatization of the water sector, this film uses the example of Marrakech to showcase the dangers of such a line of thought. Short of guaranteing access rights to all, it risks depriving an ever increasing part of the population of a fundamental ressource.

Télécharger la bande annonce et le dossier de presse

    l'Or bleu, final

     
Chamber Music
     
   
Amers, vue du ciel...

(in memory of Catherine Binard)


Violin, Eric Robberecht
Cello, Sébastien Walnier
piano, Jean-Phillipe Collard-Neven

recorded live at the salon Mativa (Liège)
April 2005
  piano trio (violin, cello, piano) 2001

ordered by the Ensemble of Musiques Nouvelles


     
   
Toi qui cours avec les loups


recorded by the Danel Quartet
  string quartet 2001
     
Various
     
     
Petit Lou

  piano and electronic 2005
     
   
La leçon de chant

  radio play based on the eponymous novel by François Emmanuel

artistic direction and editing: Geneviève Damas

reading: François Emmanuel
music and interpretation: Jean-Philippe Collard- Neven
Sound: Michaël W. Huon

    (extract)