Each of the Joueurs de Flute has a mythological theme and the God Pan is this one. Pan was half man and half goat. He wasn’t the most handsome of creatures and was the God of nature. He had a penchant for chasing the nymphs and in particular Syrinx. None of them returned his affections and in this piece there is quite the chase that to me lands up in water. No doubt, it was maybe Syrinx he was chasing.
The opening sets the scene for the piece with a strong sense of nature, creatures and sunshine. Pan spies Syrinx in the Anime section at 1 and the chase is on. Syrinx heads for water and at Lente there is a magical mood change to water. It was fun melding my tonal colour into the piano here to get that sense of being submerged. I feel Syrinx stays under water for the rest of the piece with Pan darting about to find her. The recap of theme begins the wind down and return maybe sunset and the end of the day and escapade.
It really doesn’t matter what your story is. The most important thing is you have a story and can impart that story to the listener. I didn’t realise until recently, but storytelling is a big part of what I have taken away from the Melodious Studies and Tone development Through Interpretation. In their own way and differently they encourage this . Moyse was a wonderful educator and mind opener.
Roussel was born in 1869 and was influenced by Impressionism and Neo Classicism. Here is a link to a brief overview of Roussel and his works.
Biography, Bach Connection, Bach-related Works and Pictures of the artist