In this piece, the percussionist plays on the verge of the inaudible, as if afraid of destroying the aura left behind by the piano, cello and oboe. Three side drums, a crotale, a marimba, and a vibraslap are his contribution to a jumble of instruments which, despite their diversity, aspire to the aesthetics homogeneity of a string quartet. This homogeneity is made possible by a musical master-plan based on a precise analysis of the properties of the instruments and their subtlest modes of performance. Klein is keenly concerned with delicate intonation; she presupposes the musicians’ desire to play with a “beautiful tone’ – a tone held firmly in place, and therefore made indispensable and right, by the imperceptible fibers of its inner tension. Klein has positioned the instruments in such a way that the musicians can maintain eye contact. The title “mit” (“with”) may thus be viewed as an invitation to the musicians to play “with each other”. But it also resonates in the nethermost units of the musical material: every tone, every gesture must be connected “with another” lest it remain incomplete. When the music box plays Brahms’s Lullaby at the end of the piece, as if from a great distance, it settles naturally into the flow of the music, into the “with-each-other”. The piece is delicately permeated by the sounds of the crotale; everything leads towards a broadly conceived crescendo-decrescendo on a sustained note in the oboe, accompanied as it were by the other musicians. This note emerges from the music in such a way that each musician can regard it as “his” note, a note to which he adds a special nuance. The piece ends in a gentle coda, an endlessly drawn-out “with” that long reverberates in the listener’s mind.
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