Le Tombeau de Messiaen - (2017)    

for harp and organ

for Gregory D'Agostino


A suggestion was sent me as regards this combination of harp and organ, for a work based on the modes of Olivier Messiaen. This little "in memoriam" to Messiaen is the result.


Detail of illumination in Walter de Milemete’s De Nobilitatibus, Sapientiis et Prudentiis Regum (14th century), Christ Church Library, Oxford.


The restrictions of the seven strings of the chromatic harp are at the same time opportunities, for the gestures are those which are difficult to impossible on a keyboard instrument. Likewise the restrictions of the organ become opportunities when linked to those of the chromatic harp. Organist Gregory D'Agostino had noted the work for solo harp, On Progressions of Messiaen composed in 2016, and wondered about something in a similar vein for this combination. A spark was struck.


 The work is a true duet for the two instruments, neither playing solely an accompanying role, though the obvious choice of arpeggios for the harp suggest this at times under solo voices in the organ.  Therefore organ registrations are suggested which would balance acoustically the "voice" of the harp in a concert venue.




16 pages, circa 10' 30" - an MP3 demo is here: 


The score is available as a free PDF download, though any major commercial performance or recording of the work is prohibited without prior arrangement with the composer. Click on the graphic below for this score.


Le Tombeau de Messiaen



Le Tombeau de Messiaen

harp part