Philippe Menard

Subject: Philippe Menard
From: Barry Truax (
Date: Thu Mar 04 1999 - 03:07:14 EST

   It's with great sadness that I received the announcement of the passing
of Philippe Menard, particularly at such a young age. From our first
meetings at the festival in Bourges, I always valued his warmth, love of
life and in particular his music (which was performed at SFU, by the way,
at our outdoor concert during ICMC 85).
   Since his activity over the last many years was centred at UQAM and his
artistic work (as I heard from time to time) around theatre and other
mixed media events, it's possible that not too many people outside
Montreal are familiar with his electroacoustic music, particularly the
solo tape pieces.
   My favorite is the dynamic Maqam a Toi, based on Arabic music and
dedicated to the immigrant laborers in France around whom he lived during
his stay there. I played it for my electroacoustic music class just a few
weeks ago, and once more the reaction to this 1970s piece was one of
amazement and enthusiasm for its sheer musicality, the way in which it
extended the Arabic tradition through electroacoustic means, yet never
lost its original flavour. As far as I know it was never published, but it
remains on my personal list as one of the best works from the peak of the
analog period in the 1970s.
   May I suggest to our Montreal colleagues that an effort be made to
organize a CD of Philippe's music, or at the very least to include Maqam
on the next anthology of Canadian ea music. His work deserves to be better
known and it would help us all preserve his memory.
   Barry Truax

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