Alain Lalonde | The Canadian Encyclopedia


Alain Lalonde

Lalonde, Alain. Composer, teacher, b Montreal 19 Apr 1951; B MUS piano (Montreal) 1971, premier prix analysis (CMM) 1977, deuxième prix composition (CMM) 1979, D MUS (Montreal) 1996.

Lalonde, Alain

Lalonde, Alain. Composer, teacher, b Montreal 19 Apr 1951; B MUS piano (Montreal) 1971, premier prix analysis (CMM) 1977, deuxième prix composition (CMM) 1979, D MUS (Montreal) 1996. After studying piano, initially at l'École Vincent-d'Indy, Lalonde pursued his training at the Conservatoire de musique du Québec à Montréal (CMM) with Gilles Tremblay. He completed his apprenticeship with Serge Garant and Marcelle Deschênes at the University of Montreal. In 1974, he participated in a study program at the Office franco-québécois pour la jeunesse in Paris and in Strasbourg with composers and percussionists. Concurrently with his activities as a composer, Lalonde became known as an organizer and a teacher of young people and adults (for musical camps, Cegeps, the City of Montreal, etc). In 1978 he began teaching at the University of Montreal, where he completed a doctorate in composition under the direction of Michel Longtin. In 1980 he won the CAPAC first prize with Air-Métal (1979) for large orchestra. He was awarded scholarships by the Canada Council and the Ministère des Affaires culturelles du Québec (1985-6).

Lalonde's works call for a varied number of players, ranging from solo instrument works such as Trois Solos d'un personnage, 1977, recorded by the flutist Lise Daoust on RCI 535, and Appels à l'être for percussionist-actor, to works for large orchestra such as Hommage à Schumann (1977), and works for smaller ensembles such as À la recherche de... (1983), commissioned by the Événements du neuf; and Glissements, tourments, ravissements (1988), commissioned by the CBC for the 60th anniversary of the creation of the ondes Martenot. Lalonde has even used pre-recorded tape in Dans l'univers, l'amour (1987), commissioned by the Orchestre des jeunes du Québec). Starting with Espaces (1981, commissioned by the Société de musique contemporaine du Québec), Lalonde's presentations aimed at using the site of a performance as an expressive element and consequently modified the rapport between the performers and the public. As a member of the Groupe des sisses with Walter Boudreau, Michel-Georges Brégent, Michel Gonneville, Denis Gougeon, Michel Longtin (for the first composition only) and John Rea (for the second and third compositions), he participated in the writing of collective works such as La Folia (1984), Musique des jardins sans complexe for brass and percussion (1987), and Fanfares-plus at the Festival de Liège in Belgium. The second was used in the making of a short film, Fanfares (Rhombus Media 1988), which gives a portrait of these composers.

Communal composition became central to Lalonde in 1990 when he worked with Michel Gonneville, Pierre Desrochers, André Hamel, and Alain Dauphinais to create Sonoguide, a performance that included a guided tour of the Faculty of Music at the University of Montreal. Following its success, Lalonde, Hamel, and Dauphinais formed Espaces sonores illimités (ESI) in 1992. Their first piece was Musique en espace sacré, written for the 11th International Festival of Contemporary Music in Victoriaville, Que, was premiered 19 May 1994 by the Ensemble de musique contemporaine and two musicians on folk and ancient instruments. Their next work, commissioned by Radio-Canada and premiered at Montreal's St-Jean-Baptiste Church 29 May 1996, was Cadavres presqu'exquis, again for the Ensemble de musique contemporaine. They produced the Aires libre event at the 1998 Symphonie portuaire, participated in the Symphonie du millénaire in 2000, and composed Symphonie des éléments, performed by the musicians of the CMM and the École Joseph-François-Perrault in March 2005.

Lalonde was a member of the Société des concerts alternatifs du Québec (now Codes d'Accès) 1988-91. He is a member of the Canadian Electroacoustic Community and of the Canadian League of Composers, and an associate of the Canadian Music Centre. He has taught at both the Conservatoire de musique du Québec à Montréal, and the University of Montreal.

Selected Works

Couleurs. 1974. Cello, harp, five percussionists. Ms

Trois Solos d'un personage. 1976-7. Soloist on flute, piccolo, and flute in G. Ms

Hommage à Schumann. 1977. Orchestra

Air-Métal. 1979. Orchestra. Ms

Espaces. 1981. Flute and piccolo, clarinet in E flat, bass and double bass clarinets, bassoon and double bassoon, three percussions, violin, double bass and spatialization system. Ms

Étude de distances, de relations, de contacts, de communication, d'ouverture. 1982. Two horns, trumpet, trombone, percussion, violin, viola, cello. Ms

À la recherche de... 1983. Two sopranos, three percussionists. Ms

Echolalie l'air erre. 1987. Four horns, four trumpets, two trombones, two tubas and four percussion. Ms

Dans l'univers, l'amour. 1987. Orchestra and tape. Ms

Glissements, tourments, ravissements. 1988. Two trombones, 2 ondes martenots, violin, viola, cello, double bass. Ms

Mouvances, Errances et toute cette sorte d'ances. 1988. Two oboes, three horns, two tubas, electronic percussion and four violas. Ms

Appels à l'être. 1990. Percussionist-actor

Musiques en Espace Sacré. 1994. Chamber orchestra with two soloists on folk and ancient instruments. With ESI

Cadavres presqu'exquis. 1996. Chamber orchestra. With ESI

Symphonie des elements. 2000. Orchestra. With ESI

Further Reading