Yomi no kuni kara (黄泉の国から)

DUMONT Aurélien
Instrumental ensembles
ISMN 979-0-56025-198-1




Ensemble Muromachi


黄泉の国から Yomi no kuni kara is a peculiar work in my catalog, due to its unlikely nomenclature but also and above all because the project behind it attempts to reflect on the question of universals. If this dimension is new to my work, it’s because it’s part of my broader reflections on the question of otherness. It has led me to compare a spiritual work, the Kojiki, a kind of Shinto bible written in the 8th century AD, with a classical opera, Orpheus and Eurydice by composer Christoph Willibald Gluck.
Indeed, one of the first stories told in the Kojiki bears a striking resemblance to the Orpheus myth:
Izanami and Izanagi, two creator deities, give birth to several Kami-sama (spirits and deities who will become the islands of Japan). One of them kills his mother at birth, as he is made mainly of fire and burns her vagina. Izanagi then tries to find his wife in the underworld, but is forbidden to look at her if he wants to get her back…
There are troubling similarities with Orpheus. The structure of the piece is thus established in a kind of inter-narrative bounded by these two works embodied in different ways; by a long solo by Biwa, who, in the Japanese tradition, had a supporting role in telling the epics, and by a particular device of three counter-tenors hidden in the orchestra, more evocative of the Western figure.
The resulting music thrives on formal ambiguities (false overture, impression of a concerto in flight, suspended and repeated musical objects that destabilize the narrative sensation) that fade into a coda conceived as a small nocturnal landscape, gradually reducing to a slow, organic breath.
Aurélien Dumont


-Here is a link to a short report on the creation of Yomi no kuni kara (RTS, Swiss radio):


(click on Orphée japonais)

Additional information

Weight0,300 kg
Dimensions25,6 × 36,4 × 0,5 cm

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