As I mentioned at the beginning of this chapter, in music, Romantic language was quite prominent throughout the second half of the 19th century. However, there were many breaks from the traditional Romantic language, through the extension of forms, the use of folk music, etc.
I chose two very different examples: “The Illegible Letter” by Søren Kierkegaard and the painting The Cyclops by Odilon Redon.
In the “Illegible Letter” I tried to portray the sense of existentialism in his work. I performed one improvisation on my own, and one with Beatriz Rola, from my trio. When I performed it alone, I had the thought to relate the letter to the use of repetition in Brahms’ Intermezzi op. 117. I tried to work with the idea of a repeating motive that comes back time and time again, just as in the “Illegible Letter” the character reads and re-reads the letter until it crumbles.
In the improvisation my trio and I made of Redon’s Cyclops, I asked my trio-mates to think about the colorful language of Debussy. We also decided to followed the story line of the Cyclops who was enamored with Galatea, and who, upon seeing her with her lover Acis, he throws a boulder and crushes him. Galatea then turns his running blood into a river.