Citius, altius, fortius!

Olympic Ouverture

“With its catchy melodies and skillful orchestration, Citius, Altius, Fortius! more than held its own alongside the American symphonic repertoire.”
Steve Bergeron, La Tribune

Citius, Altius, Fortius! Beyond the rivalry, media craze and prestigious medals, the Olympic games epitomize the invigorating adventure of surpassing oneself. The Olympic motto: Citius, Altius, Fortius (Faster, Higher, Stronger) is for me a rousing call of encouragement to achieve the goals we set for ourselves. It is in this very state of mind that I composed the piece, and in which I wish to drive the listener. Short and energetic, the orchestral movement is characterized by rapid, bustling textures (citius), ascending melodic gestures (altius), and powerful, brass chords (fortius). It is dedicated to each of my parents who, in their own way, brought me to go beyond expectations and to surpass myself.

Instrumentation:
– Version for full orchestra: 3(1.2.3/pic)333(1.2.3/cbn) / 4331 / 1 timp / 2 percs / harp / celesta (optional) / strings
– Version for reduced orchestra: 2222 / 43(or 2)31 / 1 timp / 2 percs / strings
– Version for organ
– Short version (30 sec.) for brass quintet (arr. Eric Jones-Cadieux)

Duration: 3 minutes

Commissioned by the Vancouver Symphony Orchestra and Bramwell Tovey, as part of the Olympic Commissioning Project.

Premiere: December 6th, 2008, by the Vancouver Symphony Orchestra and maestro Jean-Marie Zeitouni, at the Orpheum Theatre, in Vancouver.

Discography:
– The orchestral version of Citius, altius, fortius! is featured on the album Les plaisirs coupables of the Orchestre symphonique de Sherbrooke with maestro Stephane Laforest, published in 2017.
– The organ version of Citius, altius, fortius! is featured on the album Jean-Willy Kunz Au grand orgue Pierre-Béique, published at ATMA Classique, in 2017.

Performances of: Citius, Altius, Fortius!


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