Universal Edition - Blog

Pärt in the U.S.

Posted by Johannes Feigl on 27 Mai 2014

Arvo Pärt ProjectThere is great art; and there is popular art. Many people believe that there is a stark difference between the two. […] Very few artists are taken seriously in both realms. One of them is the Estonian composer Arvo Pärt. (Anne Midgette, The Washington Post, 23 May 2014)

Arvo Pärt has come to the East Coast for the first time in 30 years, here’s what The Washington Post has to say about the composer.

Upcoming performances of works by Arvo Pärt.

Raschèr Quartet performs Lament

Posted by Johannes Feigl on 26 Mai 2014

Raschèr Saxophone Quartet (c) Felix Broede
When I am laid in earth may my wrongs create
No trouble in thy breast,
Remember me, but ah! forget my fate.

Jay Schwartz’ Lament for solo voice and saxophone quartet will be performed on 28 May by mezzosoprano Christina Bock and the Raschèr Saxophone Quartet at the Bayerische Musikakademie Marktoberdorf.

The composition is based on Dido’s Lament from Purcell’s opera Dido and Aeneas, the lyrics are taken directly from Nahum Tate’s libretto after Vergil’s Aeneis.

View the full study score.

Jay Schwartz on Lament.

Jay Schwartz: Lament
for solo voice and saxophone quartet | 12'
28.05.2014, Marktoberdorf, Bayerische Musikakademie; Christina Bock, ms; Raschèr Saxophone Quartet

Dürer’s and Birtwistle’s Melencolia I

Posted by Johannes Feigl on 26 Mai 2014 (Kommentare: 1)

Albrecht Dürer: Melencolia IAlbrecht Dürer’s engraving Melencolia I inspired Sir Harrison Birtwistle to write his eponymous work for clarinet, harp and 2 string orchestras in 1976.

Today at 17:00pm CET/CEST BBC Radio 4 broadcasts an episode that focuses on the famous engraving, the composer has been interviewed for the programme. Listen live.

Melencolia I will be performed this Friday at the Barbican Centre in London, Baldur Bronnimann conducts the Britten Sinfonia.

Sir Harrison Birtwistle: Melencolia I
for clarinet, harp and 2 string orchestras |24'
30.05.2014, Barbican Centre, London; Britten Sinfonia, Baldur Bronnimann

UE Newsletter May 2014

Posted by Johannes Feigl on 23 Mai 2014

Newsletter UEHere’s the latest Universal Edition newsletter, focusing on the publication of the Musikblätter 7, Arvo Pärt’s visit to the US, and the world première of Mauricio Sotelo’s Bruckner Nachklang.

Furthermore you can read the full study scores of Victoria Borisova-Ollas’ Open Ground and of arrangements of Zemlinsky’s Sinfonietta (Freisitzer) and Mahler’s Das Trinklied vom Jammer der Erde (Matthews), all of which have national premières this month.

View the newsletter online.

Clocks and Clouds: György Ligeti on BBC Radio 3

Posted by Johannes Feigl on 23 Mai 2014

György Ligeti (c) SchottBBC Radio 3 will broadcast an interview with György Ligeti from 1997 – much of which has never been broadcast – on Sunday at 19:45pm CET/CEST.

Later that night, a performance of Apparitions (BBC Scottish Symphony Orchestra, cond. Ilan Volkov) will be broadcast.

Find out more on BBC Radio 3 and listen live.

Happy Birthday Gladys Krenek

Posted by Johannes Feigl on 23 Mai 2014

Gladys Krenek in front of the Krenek-Portrait by Franz Rederer (2001) (c) Petra Preinfalk / Ernst Krenek Institut

Today, 23 May, the Ernst Krenek Institut hosts a birthday celebration and exhibition opening on the occasion of Gladys N Krenek’s 90th birthday.

From the official press release:

“As Ernst Krenek’s ingenious partner, Gladys N Krenek has been tirelessly breaking new ground for an appreciation of Krenek’s visions – in his spirit, but with the productive imagination of a strong personality. Born and educated in Minnesota, she met Ernst Krenek in 1942 at Hamline University in Saint Paul, MN, and a few years later moved with him to California, where she has remained active to this day. After Krenek’s death, she initiated the foundation of the Ernst Krenek Institute in 1997. The Institute’s private foundation in Krems emerged in 2004, of which Gladys N Krenek is the honorary president.”

Find out more on the website of the Ernst Krenek Institut.

Celebrating 100 years in the Musikverein

Posted by Johannes Feigl on 21 Mai 2014

Universal Edition and the Gesellschaft der Musikfreunde in Wien (c) Universal Edition, Johannes Feigl

Last Monday we invited our colleagues from the Gesellschaft der Musikfreunde in Wien to the Universal Edition offices to celebrate 100 years of UE at the Musikverein as well as the publication of the latest issue of our Musikblätter.

Overseen by the portrait of Emil Hertzka we raised a toast to 100 successful years of cooperation and many more to come.

Symphony guide: Janáček’s Sinfonietta

Posted by Johannes Feigl on 21 Mai 2014

Leoš Janáček (c) Leoš Janáček Foundation“If you think that a piece that begins and ends with a phalanx of military fanfares, performed by an additional ensemble of 13 brass players - including nine trumpets – can’t possibly be taken seriously as one of the 20th century’s most compelling symphonies, then look away now.”

Tom Service’s latest entry in his symphony guide series takes a closer look at Leoš Janáček’s Sinfonietta.

Read the full text on The Guardian.

“I am trying to reflect the values in my music that could touch every individual”

Posted by Johannes Feigl on 20 Mai 2014

“Religion guides all the processes in our lives, without us even knowing it,” the Estonian composer Arvo Pärt said in a recent phone interview. “It is true that religion has a very important role in my composition, but how it really works, I am not able to describe.” (

Read the full article on the New York Times.

Arvo Pärt ProjectPärt will visit the United States from the middle of May until June. The composer will attend several performances of his music and receive honorary degrees from the New England Conservatory in Boston and the St. Vladimir’s Seminary in New York.

Furthermore, he will attend the world première of My Heart’s in the Highlands for alto, violin, viola, violoncello and piano. Originally composed for countertenor and organ, the work now ventures beyond a church setting for the first time.

Find out more about the Arvo Pärt Project.

Arvo Pärt: My Heart’s in the Highlands
for alto, string trio and piano | 8'30''
world prem. 29.05.2014, The Phillips Collection, Washington; Iris Oja, a; Harry Traksmann, vln; Laur Eensalu, vla; Leho Karin, vc; Marrit Gerretz-Traksmann, pno

Staud’s Par ici! on france musique

Posted by Johannes Feigl on 19 Mai 2014

France musiqueTonight at 20:00pm France musique broadcasts a recording of the French première of Johannes Maria Staud’s Par ici! from 8. April at the Lycée Turgot. Pascal Gallois conducted Prague Modern.

View the full study score.

Listen live.

Sir Harrison Birtwistle Twitter Q&A

Posted by Johannes Feigl on 19 Mai 2014

Lorenzo Troiani wins international composition contest

Posted by Johannes Feigl on 19 Mai 2014

Premio Valentino Bucchi

Congratulations to Lorenzo Troiani for winning the 36th international composition contest “Valentino Bucchi - Parco della Musica”. Universal Edition is proud to publish his winning work Empedoclea II.

Also congratulations to the three other finalists, Jacobo Gaspar Grandal, Marco Longo and Daniela Terranova, who has won the Special Mention for the Italian music SIAE Award.

From the Fondazione Valentino Bucchi’s press release:

“A large jury (100 experts) selected scores among the many works that have been received from all over the world (the deadline for this step was on February the 7th) to admit to the semi-finals. After this, an international jury – composed of Giorgio Battistelli, Francesco Dillon, Jay Schwartz, Salvatore Sciarrino and Ivan Vandor – chose the best four works to compete for the prize in the final step. On 16 May, the works were performed in a concert open to the public directed by Tonino Battista, who led the PMCE Parco della Musica Contemporanea Ensemble.

Finally the young Lorenzo Troiani (15/04/89 Rome – Italy) has been declared the award winner with his Empedoclea II.

The finalists - in alphabetical order – with the titles of their works.

Jacobo Gaspar Grandal
(23/08/75 Pontevedra – Spain)
Rumor Lìquido | 10'

Marco Longo
(08/12/79 Trento – Italy)
L’Ora blu | 11'

Daniela Terranova
(20/01/77 Udine – Italy)
I’m vertical | 9'

Lorenzo Troiani
(15/04/89 Rome – Italy)
Empedoclea II | 8'

The winner was awarded a prize money of € 4.000 (study expenses bursary), and the publication of his work by one of the most important publishing houses of the world, Universal Edition, who has helped shape the musical history of the twentieth century.

Furthermore, Troiani will see his work included in an international concert organized by PMCE to be held in autumn 2014 in France. Daniela Terranova, with his work I’m vertical has won the Special Mention for the Italian music SIAE Award – and will receive a study expenses bursary of € 3.000.”

36th composition contest Valentino Bucchi in Rome

Posted by Johannes Feigl on 16 Mai 2014

The 36th international composition contest “Valentino Bucchi - Parco della Musica” takes place tonight at the Auditorium Parco della Musica - Roma. Works by the four finalists Jacobo Gaspar Grandal, Marco Longo, Daniela Terranova and Lorenzo Troiani will be performed - we are crossing our fingers. The winning work will be published by Universal Edition.

We are proud to see UE composer Jay Schwartz among the five-member jury, which consists of Giorgio Battistelli, Francesco Dillon, Salvatore Sciarrino, Ivan Vandor and him.

(how does the silver cloud s)ou(nd?) in Israel

Posted by Johannes Feigl on 16 Mai 2014

Vykintas Baltakas (c) Astrid Ackermann

Pianist Jean-Pierre Collot of the ensemble recherché will perform the Israeli première of Vykintas Baltakas’ (how does the silver cloud s)ou(nd?) at the University of Haifa on 18 May.

The composer about the piece:

The idea of (how does the silver cloud s)ou(nd?) comes from the Ouroboros – Zyklus I. In this cycle I try to take a close look at certain aspects of music in the ouroboros-piece (colours, layers, rhythmic structures, harmony, etc. – one can call them “found objects”) and to go deeper – to discover specific tendencies, develop them and turn them into independent expressions. In this way, I create pieces which I may later combine in the ouroboros-cycle under different aspects as well. The cycle can grow in all possible directions, there is almost no end to its expansion and the development is not limited by my own concepts or presuppositions. I listen to it, discover something interesting, try to understand the way it functions, learn to think in this manner and help it to express itself. Hence is the title: ouroboros is an ancient symbol depicting a snake or dragon swallowing its own tail, constantly creating itself and forming a circle. It often represents self-reflection or cyclicality. 

Read the full text.

Vykintas Baltakas: (how does the silver cloud s)ou(nd?)

The Financial Times reviews Haas at the Tectonics Festival ★★★★★

Posted by Johannes Feigl on 13 Mai 2014

Tectonics GlasgowThe Financial Times has reviewed the world première of Georg Friedrich Haas’ concerto grosso No. 2 and the première of his Concerto for baritone saxophone and orchestra at the Tectonics festival and they certainly don’t hold back on the praise: “To have one out-and-out success in the unpredictable world of new music is an achievement. To have two by the same composer in the same evening is a coup.”

Read the full review on the Financial Times.