COVID-19 Update

Despite the problems caused by the Corona-virus our Webshop and the contact forms on our website are fully available. You may also address your inquiries to Thank you for your understanding if our answer takes longer as usual because of the current restrictions. Your Universal Edition Team

Wolfgang Rihm: Gesungene Zeit

  • Music (1991-1992)
  • for violin and orchestra
  • 2 2 2 2 - 1 2 1 0 - perc(2), hp, vln(2), vla(4), vc(4), cb(2)
  • Duration: 25’
  • Soloists:
  • Instrumentation details:
    1st flute
    2nd flute (+picc)
    1st oboe
    2nd oboe
    clarinet in A
    bass clarinet in Bb
    horn in F
    1st trumpet in C
    2nd trumpet in C
    1st percussion
    2nd percussion
    1st violin
    2nd violin
    1st viola
    2nd viola
    3rd viola
    4th viola
    1st violoncello
    2nd violoncello
    3rd violoncello
    4th violoncello
    1st contrabass
    2nd contrabass
  • Composer: Wolfgang Rihm
  • Dedication: Anne-Sophie Mutter gewidmet

Work introduction


At the very moment when I was in conversation with Paul Sacher, and he was encouraging me - actually commissioning me - to write for Anne-Sophie Mutter, I remembered in a flash high notes that I had heard her play with uncommon energy and animation. I had never encountered in her playing that attenuation and impoverishment in SLOW playing in the highest regions that is typical of some virtuosos: on the contrary, precisely in remoteness her playing is richest and most alive. Especially then, when I want to give form to what is most remote, I want its representation to be the act of a living being. From that I began to spin. The thread? Until it was all spun?

The orchestra is small, and plays the role of doppelganger. The violin speaks its nerve – line out into the resounding space – inscribes it there. In essence, this is monophonic music. And it is always song, even where beat and pulse shorten the breath and press it hard.

The line, is it a whole? It is all only a part, a segment, a fragment; it is delivered up to our observation without beginning and without ending - and as we listen we draft the outline of a whole that isn't there. But it must be there....

Wolfgang Rihm


The complete perusal score (PDF-preview)

World première

Zürich (CH)
Collegium Musicum
Paul Sacher
Main soloists:
Anne-Sophie Mutter, Vl

Previously Viewed Works

No previously viewed works