Les trois mélodies lourdes for soprano and piano
dedicated to Sylvia Cazeneuve eand Caroline Oliveros


The condemned poems are a very beautiful literary discovery. It was Sylvia Cazeneuve who made me discover them. She proposed this project to me, composing a cycle of melodies on these poems. I chose three of them to compose this cycle that I wanted of about twenty minutes long : Le léthé, A celle qui est trop gaie, Les bijoux.

Baudelaire speaks about love, of course, in his condemned poems, but a carnal love, an erotic love, a forbidden love. In his time, his poems must have been shocking, indeed. They take on a different meaning in our time… some taboos have since fallen, and especially many authors have written more raw and disturbing texts. But Baudelaire’s poems keep eroticism and above all the imagination. That is what makes their strength in a sense.

We live in a more liberated time but take care that poems such as these won’t be again censored in a few years!

The condemned poems are always disturbing with truth about man, the pleasure of the body, the desire for pleasure, the power of the sexual act. These are magnificent poems that I had a happiness to put into music. The words power, jouissance, voluptuousness, eroticism, sensuality have guided my writing in this new score …


1 soprano
1 piano


duration 23′

premiere 5 august 2017, Festival Les Rencontres Lyriques de Luchon, Sylvia Cazeneuve soprano, Caroline Oliveros piano

published by Note en bulle Editions

commissioned by Les Rencontres Lyriques de Luchon