Tro, kärlek och natur är centrala teman i Olivier Messiaens liv och verk. För honom kan dessa tre elementen sammanfattas i ett enda koncept: Guds kärlek
I boken "Music and colour- Conversations with Claude Samuel" uttrycker Messiaen själv:
"The first idea I wanted to express, the most important, is the existence of the truths of the Catholic Faith. I have the good fortune to be a catholic. I was born a believer , and the Scriptures impressed me even as a child. The illumination of the theological truths of the catholic faith is the first aspect of my work, the noblest , and no doubt the most useful and most valuable – perhaps the only one I won't regret at the hour of my death.
But I am a human being, and like all others susceptible to human love, which I whished to express in three of my works that incorporate the greatest myth of human love, that of Tristan and Isolde.(Harawi, Torangalille Symphony, Cinq Réchanst for a chorus of 12 voices)
Finally I have a profound love of nature. I think nature infinitely surpasses us, and I have always sought lessons from it. I love birds, so my inclination has been to examine bird songs especially. I've studied ornithology . My music , then juxtaposes the Catholic faith, the myth of Tristan and Isolde and a highly developed use of bird songs.
But it also employs elements of plainchant (Gregorian song) , Greek metrics and provincial rhythms of ancient India; and several techniques such as rhythmic characters , nonretrogradable rhythms, and symmetrical permutations. Finally there is my research for sound – colour - the most important characteristic of my musical language."
© Yngve Bernhardsson