Messiaen’s Gratitude

original messiaen letter

Letter from Olivier Messiaen, Paris, December 22, 1971
“Dear Sir,
I can not find words that could express my gratitude to you. I received your wonderful letter, all the programs and posters, as well as reviews and articles, most kindly translated into French by your cousin. I also received a beautiful medal, which thrilled me to tears, and your remarkable record “Quartet for the end of time.” Thank you also for the wonderful color reproductions of the frescoes and icons from the Mikhailovski Cathedral in Moscow. A special thank you that you are loyal to the cause of making known my works in Russia and Lithuania, as it is with my Quartet, Exotic birds and Three little liturgies, and for the fact that you are playing the piano in these works. Thank you for the piano recitals where you acquainted the public with my Preludes, Etudes de rhythm, Regards on Jesus the Child and the Catalogue of Birds. I also see that for a long time you have been explaining and commenting orally and in writing my works, and I learned with joy that you have prepared a book about my music, this is still double my gratitude! Once more, with gratitude, great admiration and expression of my grateful friendship.” — Olivier Messiaen