Universal Edition - Blog

World première recording of the critical edition of The Makropulos Case

Posted by Johannes Feigl on 06 February 2015

The Makropulos Affair, rehearsal (c) Patrik Borecky

On 7 February at 20:00 Czech radio station Vltava will broadcast a recording of the first performance of the new critical edition of Janáček’s The Makropulos Case, which was premièred at the Janáčkovo divadlo on 21 November 2014. Listen live.

If you want to browse through the study score while listening to the performance, you can do so: we’ve uploaded an excerpt of the score to Universal Edition.

Under the auspices of Universal Edition, the new edition of The Makropulos Case incorporates all the surviving sources for the first time, realising Janáček’s intentions on a well-founded scholarly basis. The autograph full score was compared with three copies made under the composer’s supervision. In addition, the new edition includes valuable notes on practical performance by the renowned Janáček conductor Sir Charles Mackerras.

Listen to Schönberg talk about Berg

Posted by Johannes Feigl on 05 February 2015

But when I saw the compositions he showed me – songs in a style between Hugo Wolf and Brahms – I recognized at once that he was a real talent. (Arnold Schönberg, Los Angeles, 1949)

More voice recordings of Schönberg are available on the website of the Arnold Schönberg Center.

Wort | Ton | Gestalt: Harrison Birtwistle and Paul Celan

Posted by Johannes Feigl on 04 February 2015

Wort | Ton | Gestalt: Harrison Birtwistle and Paul CelanHarrison Birtwistle’s 9 Settings of Celan will be performed tonight by Katrien Baerts and the Klangforum Wien (cond. Bas Wiegers) in the frame of the “Wort | Ton | Gestalt: Harrison Birtwistle and Paul Celan” symposium at the Essl Museum in Klosterneuburg.

Download a pdf of the full programme of the symposium.

Open Spaces II | in memory of James Tenney

Posted by Johannes Feigl on 04 February 2015

Winnipeg New Music Festival

Tonight the Canadian première of Georg Friedrich Haas’ Open Spaces II | in memory of James Tenney will be performed together with other works by Zosha Di Castri, Matthew Patton and Christopher Rouse at the Winnipeg New Music Festival. Alexander Mickelthwate conducts the Winnipeg Symphony Orchestra.

The concert will be followed by a Q&A session with composers Georg Friedrich Haas, John Luther Adams and Matthew Patton.

Pablo Heras-Casado on Pierre Boulez

Posted by Johannes Feigl on 02 February 2015

Pablo Heras-Casado (c) Universal Edition, Wolfgang Schaufler

We recently met conductor Pablo Heras-Casado in Salzburg to talk about the influence that his mentor Pierre Boulez had on him.

The full interview will be published in mid-March in the very first issue of our MusikSalon, which will be dedicated exclusively to Pierre Boulez.

Visit our #Boulez90 blog to keep track of the latest news on Pierre Boulez and MusikSalon.

★★★★☆: UK première of Rihm’s “percussion epic” Tutuguri

Posted by Johannes Feigl on 02 February 2015

Wolfgang Rihm (c) Universal Edition, Eric Marinitsch

Tutuguri is vast – over two hours of music in this performance – and explosively violent. (Andrew Clements, 01.02.2015, The Guardian)

The UK première of Wolfgang Rihm’s Tutuguri was performed by Kent Nagano, the BBC Symphony Orchestra and Leigh Melrose (in the role of the speaker) on 31 January at the Barbican.

Andrew Clements gave a four star review, which you can read on The Guardian. Tune in to BBC Radio 3 to listen to a recording of the première. The recording will be online until 2 March.

Last but not least, we’ve uploaded the study score of the first scene for you, which you can view here.

Boulez / Varèse

Posted by Johannes Feigl on 02 February 2015

Boulez/Varèse: ensemble intercontemporain“Fold by fold” – this is the English translation of the French title; the text was written by Stéphane Mallarmé – is a milestone in recent music history: in this work, Mallarmé – the revolutionary innovator of French poetry – meets Pierre Boulez, whose treatment of the text and instruments reveals him to be just as much a revolutionary innovator of music. Pli selon pli is therefore not just a “Portrait de Mallarmé”, but also one of Pierre Boulez. (Bálint András Varga)

On 3 February Matthias Pintscher, soprano Marisol Montalvo, the ensemble intercontemporain and the Orchestre du Conservatoire de Paris present an evening with Pierre Boulez’ Pli selon pli and Edgard Varèse’s Amériques at the Philharmonie de Paris.

Find out more on the website of the Philharmonie de Paris.

Watch an excerpt of Boulez conducting Pli selon Pli:

Bluebeard’s Castle: “Bartók’s portrait of marital failure chillingly realised”

Posted by Johannes Feigl on 29 January 2015

Bluebeard’s Castle; wood engraving by Gustave Doré, public domain

Charles Dutoit’s performance with the Royal Philharmonic Orchestra, the final work in a Hungarian-themed evening, was a fine reminder of [Bluebeard’s Castle’s] power to haunt and disturb by musical means alone. (Tim Ashley, The Guardian, 28.01.2015)

Find Tim Ashley’s full review of Bluebeard’s Castle at the Royal Festival Hall on The Guardian.

Scores by Georg Friedrich Haas on music austria

Posted by Johannes Feigl on 28 January 2015

music austria

Great news from our colleagues at music austria: you can now purchase and download more than 15 digital scores by Georg Friedrich Haas on their website.

Boulez in Aldeburgh

Posted by Johannes Feigl on 28 January 2015

Aldeburgh Festival 2015

The full Aldeburgh Festival 2015 programme has been announced earlier this week. Find out more on our #Boulez90 blog.

Berio’s Sinfonia at the Music & Words Festival

Posted by Johannes Feigl on 28 January 2015

Music and Words Festival

Christian Baldini and the UC Davis Symphony Orchestra will perform Luciano Berio’s Sinfonia on Saturday, 31 January, at the Music & Words Festival.

Find out more on the website of the Mondavi Center or watch a short feature on YouTube in which the conductor talks about Sinfonia and the Music & Words Festival:

In principio. The Word in Arvo Pärt’s Music

Posted by Johannes Feigl on 26 January 2015

In principio. The Word in Arvo Pärt’s MusicTexts live their independent lives and they wait for us: each person has their own time for finding those texts. These encounters occur when the texts are no longer considered as literature or works of art, but as anchors or models. (Arvo Pärt)

Last Friday the Arvo Pärt Centre presented its first book “In principio. The Word in Arvo Pärt’s Music” in the hall of Estonian Academy of Sciences.

The book brings together 81 texts of Arvo Pärt’s works, complete with English translations. The works have been arranged chronologically, encompassing Pärt’s work over almost 60 years.

Find out more about the book on the website of the Arvo Pärt Centre.

Photos from the presentation are available on the Centre’s Facebook page.

“Beautiful regions beneath”: Haas’ String Quartet No. 8

Posted by Johannes Feigl on 22 January 2015

The JACK Quartet by Justin Bernhaut

“If quartets are usually a conversation, drunken banter appeared to dominate the opening. But gradually, slowly, moments of captivating clarity began to appear, the blurred and often abrasive surface gave way to the cold, beautiful regions beneath.” (Guy Dammann, The Guardian, 21.01.2015)

Guy Dammann on the JACK Quartet’s recent performance of the String Quartet No. 8 by Georg Friedrich Haas at Wigmore Hall, London.

Find the full review on The Guardian.

“That's what you do for someone you love”

Posted by Johannes Feigl on 20 January 2015

Pierre Boulez, The Cleveland Orchestra: 90th Birthday Salute

That the orchestra accomplished so much in a single weekend […] is astonishing. Then again, it also makes perfect sense. That's what you do for someone you love. (Zachary Lewis,, 17.01.2015)

Each [of the five Notations] still seems as musically inevitable as the 1945 piano pieces did. Conductor and orchestra gave committed performances that surely would have pleased the French master. (Timothy Robson, bachtrack, 18.01.2015)

Find the full reviews of Franz Welser-Möst’s and the Cleveland Orchestra’s tribute concert to Pierre Boulez on 15 January by and bachtrack by clicking the respective links.

The Tallis Scholars: “Arvo Pärt: Tintinnabuli”

Posted by Johannes Feigl on 20 January 2015

The Tallis Scholars: Arvo Pärt: Tintinnabuli; Gimell

It is with great pleasure that we present our tribute to Arvo Pärt in his 80th year. Tintinnabuli (from the Latin for ‘bell’) is the compositional style created by Arvo Pärt which informs every work on this recording. In all my searchings for inspiring contemporary music I have not come across anyone to rival him. (Peter Phillips)

The Tallis Scholars’ “Arvo Pärt: Tintinnabuli”-CD will be released on 2 March 2015. The official release page is up and running: visit the website of Gimell to read the liner notes and listen to excerpts of the recording’s 23 tracks.

The Tallis Scholars: Arvo Pärt: Tintinnabuli; Gimell