L’énigme anima

Jacques Tremblay

L’énigme anima

  • Jacques Tremblay
  • Year of composition: 1997, 2001
  • Duration: 9:22
  • Instrumentation: stereo fixed medium
  • Publisher(s): Ymx média
  • Commission: ACREQ
  • ISWC: T9018959212

There are two characters in this piece: Persona and Anima.

Persona is the external personality, here represented by guitar sounds. Anima illustrates the inner personality, consisting in the behaviour regarding the psychic process (facing the subconscious). Here, Anima is characterized by the expressive nature of a counter tenor’s voice.

CG Jung taught us that these two facets complement each other. The tragical play and opposition of the opposites existing between the inner self and the outer self actually provides the energy that drives any kind of vital process.

In a sense, this composition is an allegory on the intimate otherness that can come to life in every individual. Something like a quest on the bright side of the soul — finding the frontier any creator seeks in order to go back to one’s roots.

The anima is the other side of the self that urges you to continue, that invites you to reinvent subconscious chaos, this pool of gestating multiple possibles. The subconsciousness’s charm resides in the fact that it is endless.

Is it the anima that stimulates us and makes us evolve from our earliest childhood on? What is it that urges my seven-month-old son to try to stand up on his tiny feet, despite the fact that he may fall and hurt himself? Is he aware of the risk he is taking? Where is his drive to try new things every day coming from? Is the anima what pushes him to push back his limits, again and again?

At least, this lack of a definitive answer is what keeps on stimulating all the people who care to create and reinvent.

[English translation: François Couture, ix-08]

L’énigme anima [The Anima Enigma] was realized in 1997 at the composer’s studio and premiered (under the title Faux lot de flots) on May 1, 1997 during the concert “Haute tension” presented by ACREQ at Usine C in Montréal. This work was commissioned by ACREQ. The piece took its final title only after it was repaired and revised in 2001.


  • May 1, 1997, Haute tension, Usine C, Montréal (Québec)