Bernard Salles writes: "After having written 6 collections of seven pieces for unaccompanied double bass, "Portraits for Friends", I realised that they only contained portraits of male double bass players, and not a single woman was represented! I decided to repair this oversight by writing a series of pieces in the same style as "Portraits for Friends", but dedicated to female double bass players.
Each short piece is a "portrait", or more precisely a "perfume". By perfume, I mean the sense of a person; their essence: something which you feel rather than see. I enjoyed trying to capture the "perfume" of each double bass player, and trying to express something of their personality in these pages.
Like Elgar in his Enigma Variations, the person to whom each portrait is dedicated is anonymous, and only their initials form the title of each piece. Each player may reveal the secret, if she so wishes!"
Bernard Salles was born in 1954 and began his musical education in his home town of Perpignan (France) where he studied double bass, organ, composition and orchestral conducting at the Conservatoire. In 1973 he want to the Conservatoire of Versailles and in 1976, at the age of 22, he was awarded a double bass teaching diploma. Since then he has taught at the Conservatoire of Pau (South-west France) and played with many major French orchestras including the Orchestre de Paris and the National Orchestra of France, under the direction of conductors such as Daniel Barenboim, Pierre Boulez, Zubin Metha and Lorin Maazel.
In 1983 he began a parallel career as a conductor and was Music Director of the Orchestra of Pau from 1996-2001. He has directed the Orchestra of Pamplona (Spain) and is currently Music Director of the OSSO (Orchestre Symphonique du Sud-Ouest).
As a composer and member of SACEM (Society of Authors, Composers and Editors of Music), he has written over 30 works including two symphonies, a cantata, a psalm for bass and orchestra, a concerto for double bass and small orchestra, Rhapsody for viola and orchestra, Triptych for orchestra, Prelude for cello and orchestra, a symphonic poem for soprano, cello and orchestra, as well as works for chamber groups, and for choir and organ. His pedagogic works are published by G.Billaudot in Paris and his works for double bass are published by Recital Music (England).
In 2010 he began a series of short pieces for unaccompanied double bass - Portraits for Friends - dedicated to his double bass playing friends.