Glorious Clouds
It was really hard to compose this work.
One day I was reading an article in a magazine about microbiomes and I was extremely interested to know more about them.  Thus began my research on this subject.

Microorganisms live not only in the intestines but also on the skin. In fact microorganisms live everywhere on the earth. Because of the amazing network of microorganisms that are everywhere, animals including us, humans, can survive.

I read that some insects can be made to commit suicide by microorganisms (if certain bacterias require water to breed, they will infect the insect which cannot survive in water, force it to suddenly fall into the water; the insect dies instantly but the bacteria will start to breed happily in the water). It is true that we are controlled by microorganisms.

Also, I read the benefits of microbes and animals are great.
For example, microorganisms are essential for digestion and absorption in our body, and it seems that some of the vitamins that we cannot synthesize in the body may be produced by microorganisms.
When I read these articles, I thought that "Ah!!! Various small microorganisms are making the whole world, that is just like an orchestra itself!" So I started composing.

To compose this work, I continued to read a lot of books and papers on this topic, both in English and in Japanese. I even contacted the writers of some of the clinical studies I had found on Twitter. The researchers seemed to be surprised that music composers were reading their papers!
Ultimately, I got an opportunity to meet with Dr. Satoshi Omura, who is the Nobel Prize winner for Physiology and Medicine in 2015 for microbiology research. The conversation with him about his studies was quite inspirational. As you might imagine, it took more time to research the subject matter of the work than writing the score!

Glorious Clouds begins with the impression that microorganisms are flying around. . . . That's easy on the sketchpads, but then I have to write all those notes which should sound good to my ear, to design all those many sounds floating around “freely”, but yet to have overall harmonic control and the movement of that was a real challenge for me.

As often I do, I composed this work with many interruptions, writing for a few months then stopping to write another composition, then returning.  On and off for about a year or so until I reached the final bar.

When I started writing, I was composing this work as the last commissioned work as composer in residence of the Nagoya Philharmonic Orchestra, but by the time the composition was completed, WDR Sinfonieorchester Köln, Orchestre national d'Île-de-France (where I will be the composer in residence from 2017) have joined in as co-commissioners.
The world premiere will be performed by Nagoya Philharmonic Orchestra in Nagoya.
French and German premieres will be by those co-commissning orchestras.

I hope that this microorganism orchestra will be played a lot all over the world in the future.

Dai Fujikura (edited by Harry Ross)


ある日読んでいた雑誌に、腸内微生物の記事を見つけて興味を引かれ、どんどんとリサーチしていくうちに、もしこのアイデアでオーケストラ作品が書 けたらどうなるか?と思ったのがはじまりだった。

虫によっては微生物によって自殺行為までさせられる虫がいたり(ある虫に、繁殖するためには水が必要な微生物が付着すると、水の中では生きられな いはずの虫が急に水に向かって飛び込み、そのお陰で水にありつけた微生物が繁殖していくということがあるらしい・・・)、まさに我々は微生物にコ ントロールされている=生かされている、ということだ。

例えば、微生物は我々の体内での消化吸収に欠かせない存在であったり、我々が体内で合成できないビタミンの一部は微生物によって生成されているこ ともあるらしい。

作曲にあたっては、英語・日本語を問わず、このトピックの書籍や論文なども沢山読み、執筆者にツィッターで直接コンタクトをすることもあった。 ツィッターで少しお話しした微生物研究者やそれらの本の著者らは作曲家がこういう論文を読んでいる、ということに驚いていたようだ。
最終的には、微生物研究で2015年にノーベル生理学・医学賞を受賞された大村智さんに面会しお話を伺う機会もあり、作曲以上にリサーチにも時間 がかかった作品になった。

微生物がうわーーーっと舞ってる感じでオーケストラ作品が始まる。。。。というのは、スケッチ帳では簡単だが、それらの細かい音を全て書かないと いけない。舞っている沢山の音が全体にどう響き、動くか、などのデザインも大変だった。書いては中断して他の作品を書き、また再開して中断して、 などを1年くらい続けてやっと完成したこの作品。

書き始めた頃は、名古屋フィルハーモニー交響楽団のコンポーザー・イン・レジデンスとしての最後の委嘱作品として作曲していたのだが、曲が完成す る頃には、ケルンWDR放送交響楽団、イル・ド・フランス国立管弦楽団(2017年からコンポーザー・イン・レジデンスを務める)からの共同委嘱 も決まった。



- MENU -
top page

© Copyright Dai Fujikura. All rights reserved.