Jean-Philippe Collard-Neven Incidental Music

Composing music for the theatre, Collard-Neven has developed the kind of thematic and stylistic range that comes from having to convey thoughts and emotions that might not occur to him when writing for himself. Taking inspiration from the movies of greats like Truffaut and Lelouch, the composer's 33 pieces, drawn from 12 plays, understandably are all over the map. Veering from the whistled jauntiness of "Stib" ― you can just see a young Catherine Deneuve running through Paris to meet her boyfriend ― to the maniacal intensity of "Le Tango de Snipers," each tune is carefully crafted to convey palpable mood and setting. And it's because each play and the scenes within require of Collard-Neven this deliberate differentiation that each of his compositions is distinct from its track-mates. "La Valse" begins like a quick ballet piece, slowing down into a dream-like reverie, while "La Lettre de Là-Bas" has a clockwork pizzicato accompaniment to a floating calypso piano song. This is emotionally and intellectually compelling music. (Sub Rosa)