"Four works written by Satie for his collaborations with the artist Pablo Picasso, including the 'Cubist' ballets Parade (1917) and Mercure (1924). Both scores are presented here in arrangements for solo piano as well as full orchestra. CD also includes two rarely-heard Satie avant-garde miniatures, The Puppets Are Dancing and Diversion (The Statue Found). Bojan Gorišek - solo piano. The New London Orchestra. Gnac. Booklet includes images and detailed liner notes by James Hayward."-LTM
"Erik Satie was first introduced to the Spanish-born artist Pablo Picasso (1881-1973) in Paris by polymath auteur and catalyst Jean Cocteau. At this time Cocteau was then working on the 'realist ballet' Parade, to be staged in Paris in May 1917 by Sergei Diaghilev's celebrated Russian Ballet, and with the expressed ambition of representing the principles of Cubism on stage.
Satie was commissioned to compose the musical score, and Picasso (a founder of Cubism together with Georges Braque) to design costumes and décor. Famously, the impact of Parade was much enhanced by the use of striking scenic sound effects within the music score, including typewriter keys, gunshots, sirens, aeroplanes and lottery wheels. If these scenic sound effects can be said to owe any debt to Futurism and the Art of Noises, however, it is because Diaghilev imposed these elements on Cocteau, much against Satie's wishes.
Speaking to Vanity Fair, Cocteau attributed the following comments to Satie: "I have composed a background to throw into relief the various noises the playwright considers indispensable for giving each of his characters the right atmosphere. These noises are, in music, of the same character as the pieces of newspaper, painted wood-grain and other everyday objects that Cubist painters frequently employ in their pictures, in order to localize objects and masses in nature."
Probably the sentiments are those of Cocteau alone. Satie himself seems to have been disinclined to write about either Cubism or Futurism, although he noted more generally in a sketchbook, "Musical evolution is always a hundred years behind pictorial evolution." However Fernande Olivier, Picasso's mistress during his Montmartre period (1904-12) later wrote: "The only person that I heard argue clearly and simply about Cubism was Erik Satie. I believe that he alone, if he had written on Cubism, could have made it easily comprehensible. But he would doubtless have done it in such a manner that the painters concerned would have disowned it. It would have been too clear!" [...]"