© Steven Prengels



This string sextett was commissioned by the Oxalys Ensemble in 2008 to be performed together with Schoenberg's 'Verklärte Nacht' (1899). I found my inspiration for this work in Nietzsche's Morgenröte (1881), allthough this is not to be taken too literally. The links between the book and the composition are very free and associative.


In this book we find a “subterrestrial” at work, digging, mining, undermining. You can see him, always provided that you have eyes for such deep work,—how he makes his way slowly, cautiously, gently but surely, without showing signs of the weariness that usually accompanies a long privation of light and air. He might even be called happy, despite his labours in the dark. Does it not seem as if some faith were leading him on, some solace recompensing him for his toil? Or that he himself desires a long period of darkness, an unintelligible, hidden, enigmatic something, knowing as he does that he will in time have his own morning, his own redemption, his own rosy dawn?—Yea, verily he will return: ask him not what he seeketh in the depths; for he himself will tell you, this apparent Trophonius and subterrestrial, whensoever he once again becomes man. One easily unlearns how to hold one's tongue when one has for so long been a mole, and all alone, like him.—


F. Nietzsche, Morgenröte (preface)


2 violins, 2 violas, 2 celli




dedicated to.






Steven Prengels


Koenraad Hofman


Koninklijk Conservatorium, Brussel (06.12.2010)


Oxalys Ensemble