In honor of Henri Tomasi
by Marcel Mihalovici


Guitare et Musique n° 65, January, 1971


When did I first meet Henri TOMASI? 48, 50 years ago? I don’t remember. All I know is that we were both students at the time – he went to the Conservatoire, I to the Scola. We immediately used ‘tu’ with each other. My friendship towards Tomasi was sincere, and I believe he felt the same.

He was a perfect musician. A musician who was endowed with freedom, freedom in its noblest sense. He was free in choosing his modes of expression and in being so, he was always faithful to himself, constantly. Still, he paid close attention to all of the innovations, disciplines and techniques that our era has produced. He was free in his musical tastes, because he could love different forms of music and be interested in them, even if they went beyond the expressive or formal framework that he had elected to convey what he believed had to be said. What composer doesn’t lock himself into a chosen structure? But are there many who, like Tomasi, have an ear and an eye generous enough to accept the existence of music that oversteps the boundaries of their own esthetic viewpoints?

He was a musician who lived for his art and his art alone, and he served it with the passion, sincerity, honesty and talent that belong to those who, unbeknownst to themselves, are working for posterity.


Marcel Mihalovici