Strike a gong, and the sound burgeons outwards, but even as it swells, the sound is already dying. So it is with Boulez’s music.
Ivan Hewett of The Telegraph writes about Dérive 1 for 6 instruments in his Classical Music Guide. The piece will be performed by Variable Geometry on 10 October at the Royal College of Music in London.
Other pieces mentioned: Notations II for piano (“In December 1945, when he wrote this piece, Boulez was the archetypal angry young man”), Notations II for orchestra (“The angry 20-second shout becomes a hectic two-minute dance”) and Improvisation 1 sur Mallarmé: Le vierge, le vivace et le bel aujourd’hui (“Boulez’s later version for big orchestra is fascinating, but it’s just too luxuriantly beautiful”).
Find the full article on The Telegraph.
Pierre Boulez: Dérive 1
for 6 Instruments
fl, cl(A), vib, pno, vln, vc
10.10.2013, Royal College of Music, London; Variable Geometry, cond. Jean-Philippe Calvin
The composer about the piece:
The work is founded on two structural principles. The first is a strictly rhythmical construct of two to three permuting notes which paces through the entire piece, forming a structural basis, with temporal distensions and condensations, dynamic and colorific variations. The other is a freer level which reacts musically to the first. [read more]
View the full study score.
Find information on the composer, his works, texts, photos and performances at www.baltakas.net.
Vykintas Baltakas: Saxordionphonics
for saxophon, accordion and chamber orchestra | 15'
2 2 3 2 - 2 1 1 0 - perc, str(6 6 5 4 3)
29.09.2013, S. Lyudkevych Concert Hall, Lviv; Dieter Kraus, sax; Roman Yusipey, acc; Lviv Philharmonic Orchestra, cond. Stanislav Velyanyk
A four-hour event entitled “Luciano Berio Remembered” will take place on 27 September at the McGill University's Schulich School of Music in Montreal (free admission). Almost all of the sequenze as well as several of Luciano Berio’s shorter works, such as Lied, Gute Nacht, Les mots sont allés ..., and Rounds will be performed.
Find the full programme on the homepage of the Institut Italien de Culture de Montréal.
Pli selon pli is definitely one of Pierre's most directly emotional works. The final movement, Tombeau, ends with the word 'mort' ('death') and then there's this huge crescendo in the ensemble. It leaves you completely emotionally torn, asking questions - what condition are we in? How do we go forward? We are so shaken by it, and now it's our turn to move on, or to try to. It's overwhelming.
Tom Service talks to 42-year-old composer and conductor Matthias Pintscher about Pierre Boulez’ Pli selon pli, which will be performed on 5 October at Glasgow’s City Halls. Pintscher conducts the BBC Scottish Symphony Orchestra and soprano Marisol Montalvo.
Read the full article on The Guardian.
Andreas Scholl, world-famous countertenor, recently gave an interview to the Australian daily newspaper The Age, talking about his upcoming performances at the City Recital Hall in Sidney on October 4, 5, 8 and 9 with the Australian Chamber Orchestra.
On the strings: Helena Rathbone, vln; Rebecca Chan, vln; Christopher Moore, vla; Timo-Veikko Valve, vlc; Maxime Bibeau, cb
Find the full article on The Age.
Charles Dutoit conducts the Symphony Orchestra of India (SOI)
The 10th Summit of the Alliance of the Asia Pacific Region Orchestras (AAPRO) was held at the Jamshed Bhabha Theatre, NCPA Mumbai this September between the 19th and 22nd September.
On the agenda were ways to promote Western classical music in Asia and strategies to entice younger audiences. While there is sizeable audience for Western classical music in India, its popularity is not growing half as fast as it is growing in other Asian countries, said KN Suntook, chairman of the hosting NCPA (National Center of the Performing Arts, Mumbai). He puts this down to a lack of concert halls, funds, government support and teaching facilities. As for drawing a younger crowd, Suntook is convinced that this can only be achieved if students are exposed to Western classical music in school.
Hiroshi Kuwabara (General Manager of the Association of the Japanese Symphony Orchestras), Maki Nagura (Secretary General of AAPRO), Wolfgang Schaufler (UE), Arai Kiyoshi (General Manager Tokyo City Philharmonic Orchestra)
About the AAPRO:
Devoted to serving the interests and advocacy of orchestras and ensembles in Asia Pacific region, the Alliance of Asia-Pacific Region Orchestras (AAPRO) was founded in 1996. Since then, it has contributed enormously to enhancing exchanges among its members, raising professional standards and increasing classical music audiences in the region. The AAPRO is a creative platform for its member orchestras to exchange with their peers around the globe. It also supports its members to promote their profiles in the world of music. Its affiliation, the Asia-Pacific United Orchestra, is such a vehicle that showcases the functions of AAPRO on the stage.
Short previews of all the tracks are available on Challenge Records.
A making-of of last year’s production is available on YouTube, watch it here:
The quartet is promoting its new album (which focuses on the music of Philip Glass), music by Glass, Reich, Ligeti, and Pärt will be performed on their tour.
Watch a live video of the Dublin Guitar Quartet playing Pärt’s Summa:
Visit the Dublin Guitar Quartet website.
Just two quick reminders for everybody who is either in Dundalk or in Strasbourg today: “In iij. Noct.”, Georg Friedrich Haas’ third string quartet, will be performed for the first time in Ireland by the EQ Ensemble today at the St Nicholas Church in Dundalk in complete darkness. The Louth Contemporary Music Society presents the event.
Today Georg Friedrich Haas’ AUS.WEG will be performed for the first time in Poland. The Polish première of the work for 8 instruments takes place on the first day of the Warsaw Autumn, an international festival of contemporary music that runs from 20 to 28 September.
The composer about the piece:
The title leaves the meaning of the second word open to interpretation: “Weg” meaning “path/way” or “weg” meaning “gone/go”. This ambiguity is, of course, intentional. It could mean “way out”, “stop it, go away” or any of several other meanings.
For this piece, I drew upon former compositional techniques: I reused a two-dimensional table of chords, which was the basis for some passages in the opera Die schöne Wunde. This gives me the freedom to decide whether I want to move “horizontally” or “vertically”. The time is also strictly determined. It is based on a series of continuants, which is not heard in its original form until the end of the piece. These continuants appear earlier in the piece in longer and shorter versions, and are the basis for the time structure (rhythm and form) of the piece.
Find the full work introduction here.
Georg Friedrich Haas: AUS.WEG
for 8 instruments | 19'
national prem. 20.09.2013, Warsaw Philharmonic, Warsaw; Ensemble Phoenix Basel
Wonderful Two-Headed Nightingale: The hyper-gestural opening, the minimalist-influenced shards of accompaniment that underpin yearning, quasi-Romantic solo lines all speak of a major imagination at work. […] This live performance is simply remarkable in its intensity.
By the Screen in the Sun at the Hill on the Gold: Bedford takes the simple device of arpeggio and saturates his texture with it. […] the work’s surface is glistening and huge, moving to manic passages in which the pitch rises to the extreme top end in a series of explosions. This top-class recording (Alte Oper, Frankfurt) was made the day after the world première.
Chiaroscuro: Juxtaposing [the piano, violin, and violoncello] shows the true range of Bedford’s expressive vocabulary.
Or voit tout en aventure: Perhaps most impressive is the almost Mahlerian processional of the fourth movement, ‘Je Chante Ung Chant’ (I sing a song). This superbly produced disc confirms that Luke Bedford is a major voice. (Colin Clarke, Tempo, Volume 67, Issue 265, July 2013, pp 112-112)
Find the CD on col legno and listen to the individual tracks.
Wonderful Two-Headed Nightingale
for solo violin, solo viola and 15 players
Jonathan Morton, vln; Lawrence Power, vla; The Scottish Ensemble
By the Screen in the Sun at the Hill on the
for 18 players
Ensemble Modern, cond. Sian Edwards
for violin, violoncello and piano
Fidelio Trio: Darragh Morgan, vln, Robin Michael, vlc; Mary Dullea, pno
Man Shoots Strangers from Skyscraper
for 8 players
Ensemble Modern, cond Franck Ollu
Or Voit Tout En Aventure
for soprano and 16 players
Claire Booth, s; London Sinfonietta, cond. Oliver Knussen
A great opportunity to listen to Arvo Pärt’s Tabula Rasa once more – not to spoil it with too many words, here is the video, without further ado: enjoy this 3D projection video, created by Bordos.ArtWorks.
The projection took place in Târgu Mureș in Romania on 8 September 2013 during the 100 years anniversary of the Palace of Culture.
The artist about the projection:
“The story of this projection was inspired by the beautiful stained glass inside the Palace. Especially the legend of Kata Kadar who drown in a lake. During this projection we remembered her and revived her up for a moment. The great music of Arvo Pärt was a great inspiration as well.”
Reviews of the long-lost opera were consistently positive, especially regarding the Israel Chamber Orchestra and Alexander Kaimbacher’s performance of the fool. In a previous post, we have already written about Der Standard’s plea to “play more Schreker in Vienna”.
View the score of the reduced version.