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Zaid Jabri

General
Zaid Jabri was born in Damascus. His mother is a renowned modernist artist and his father a retired director of television and theatre. His background and early interest in music alerted him to the dense and long histories of shared and reworked harmonic and instrumental strategies across such divides as East and West. The intersection of Western and Middle Eastern musical traditions converge in his compositions.

Education
Drawn to music from an early age, he studied violin with Riyad Sukar in Damascus. At the age of 19, he was accepted at the Academy of Music in Kraków where he completed his M. A. degree with honors and then pursued his doctorate under the directorship of Zbigniew Bujarski and Krzysztof Penderecki. He obtained his doctorate in 2014.

Career
While still studying for his doctorate, Zaid Jabri began receiving international recognition when he won the prestigious Adam Didur Composers’ Competition in Sanok in 1997 for his “Two Songs for Soprano and String Orchestra.” The following year he was appointed Artist/Composer in residence at the Istanbul Bilgi University Music Department during Polish Composer’s Week. He was an instructor at the Krakow Academy of music and currently a resident composer at The Norwegian University of Sciense and Technology.

Jabri is also committed to facilitating the future careers of young musicians and composers, serving on juries for AFAC, the Adam Didur Composers’ Competition, ‘2 Agosto,’ Bilgi University and the Gdańsk Academy of Music.

He has lectured at Barnard College and Columbia University in New York, Harvard University, Jagiellonian University in Krakow, Bilgi University in Istanbul, the Gdańsk Academy of Music, the Onassis Centre in Athens, and Alwan for Arts in New York, and The University of Victoria in Canada.

Compositions
Zaid Jabri’s work has been performed in Belgium, Canada, Egypt, England, France, Germany, Greece, Iceland, Italy, the Netherlands, Poland, Russia, Syria, Tunisia, the Ukraine, the United Arab Emirates, and the USA. His work as featured at numerous festivals that include: the MATA Festival in New York, the SALT New Music Festival in Victoria, Canada, the Mediterranean Voices Project, the Oriental Landscape Festival in Damascus, the Musiikin Aika Festival in Helsinki, ECLAT in Stuttgart, the Modern Music Festival in Kiev, Ravenna Festival, the Festival of Polish Premiers of Contemporary Music in Katowice, and the Warsaw Autumn Festival. His works have been commissioned and performed internationally by such ensembles as Gidon Kremer’s Kremerata Baltica, the English Chamber Orchestra, Ensemble Zera n, the Orchestra of the Teatro Communale, Bologne, the Polish National Radio Symphony Orchestra, Neue Vocalsolisten, Stuttgart, the Armenian Philharmonic Orchestra and the Syrian National Symphony Orchestra.

His recent compositions demonstrate the range of his skills. These include: A Garden Among the Flames,  for soprano, baritone, children’s choir, mixed choir and orchestra, Altum, for cello and accordion, Variation on (R)evolution, for mezzo-soprano, violin and piano and Glyptos 2, for tape, flute, clarinet, trumpet, piano, violin and bass

One of his most ambitious current undertakings is the score for the opera Cities of Salt, based on the novel by Abdulrahman Munif, with a libretto by Yvette Christianse and Rosalind Morris. Four scenes and an intermezzo were showcased at the Royal Opera House’s Linbury Theater as part of the Shubbak Festival in July 2015.

Awards
Ziad Jabri is the recipient of prestigious fellowships and residencies. In 2011 he held a Tactus Composer’s residency and, in the same year was admitted to the Polish National Composer’s union (KZP). He also received the George Evans memorial fellowship at the Virginia Centre for the Creative Arts in the United States (2014), the Tactus Young Composers Forum residency in Belgium (2012), and a residential fellowship with the Rockefeller Foundation/Bellagio Centre (2015). In 2016-2017 he was a Fellow at the Radcliffe Institution at Harvard University. He is currently a resident composer at NTNU in Trondheim, Norway

In addition to the 1997 Adam Didur Composers’ Competition in Sanok, Poland, for his Two Songs for soprano and string orchestra, and second prize at the 2012 ‘2 Agosto’ Competition in Bologna with Les Temps des pierres for baritone and symphony orchestra.

Ralph van Raat at the Doelen

Ralph van Raat and 3 students, Christos Papandreopoulos, Paolo Gorini, Pierre Delignies Calderón will give a concert on March 4th at the Doelen with many Dutch contemporary piano works…   

16.00-17.15 uur: Part I: Ralph van Raat and students
Willem Pijper Sonate voor 2 piano’s
Jakob van Domselaer Proeven van Stijlkunst (part IV)
Peter Schat Anathema
Louis Andriessen Nuit d’été
Louis Andriessen Haags Hakkûh Stukje
Jakob van Domselaer Proeven van Stijlkunst (deel V)
Rudolf Escher Arcana – suite voor piano solo
Red Sofa-discussion with the soloists (Jurriaanse Foyer)

18.00 uur: Red Sofa Tafelmuziek: dinner at the Stadsbrasserie (à € 32,50)

20.00 uur: Part II: Ralph van Raat
Andries van Rossem Carillon
Theo Loevendie Strides
Louis Andriessen Opus 1: Rondo
Louis Andriessen Prospettive e Retrospettive
Hans van Sweeden Drei Nachtstücke in memoriam Georg Trakl
Heather Pinkham Diamonds in the Mud (world premiere)
Louis Andriessen Image de Moreau
Theo Loevendie Walk

Joep Franssens Between the Beats
Theo Loevendie Theme and Three Looks at ‘Happy Ted’ (world premiere)
Vanessa Lann Second Nature voor piano four hands (*)
* with Kamelia Miladinova

More info about the concert

Goeyvaerts exhibition in Leuven

From February 21 till March 30 you can visit the ‘Goeyvaerts Exhibition’ at KADOC in Leuven. Twenty five years after his death. In 1951 he wrote the first real serial music composition…   

Composer Karel Goeyvaerts died in 1993 a few months before his seventieth birthday. Twenty-five years later, his biography still reads like a novel. If the name Karel Goeyvaerts rings a bell abroad, it is because in the summer of 1951 when he captured the now legendary Ferienkurse für neue Musik in Darmstadt with the first pages of integral serial music. He thus made an indelible mark on the post-war avant-garde. Nevertheless, seven years later he would work as a Sabena agent at the World Exhibition in Brussels. Around that time he stopped composing for a while, and finally, in the last decade of his life, he returned to his composition activities with his opera Aquarius…..

Read more about the exhibition

Goeyvaerts at Donemus

Jeths – Recorder Concerto in Bochum

The Bochumer Symphoniker will perform the ‘Recorder Concerto’ of Willem Jeths, this time with Stefan Temmingh as soloist. On March 4 at the large hall of the ‘Anneliese Brost Musikforum Ruhr’ in Bochum….   

Erik [Bosgraaf] came over to my place a few times to play things through. He also played a number of different recorders to me. These included a sixteenth century renaissance recorder by Silvestro Ganassi. That instrument is more powerful than the more common baroque variant, so I composed my concerto specifically for the Ganassi recorder.’ As the composition progressed, Jeths was increasingly captivated by what he calls the “essence of the instrument”. ‘To me, the sound of the recorder represents innocence and fragile purity. I had to give the soloist enough scope to let him put these qualities across to the best possible effect. My orchestration is therefore deliberately thin. The orchestra plays a subservient part in this piece so that the soloist can emerge in the limelight.

(Willem Jeths)

More about the concert

Willem Jeths at Donemus

Link to the score

Donemus-composers at Omsk

Four Donemus composers: Kourliandski, Victorova, Karmanov, and Khubeev, will be performed at the prestigious music festival in Omsk (Russia)….   

In March there will take place the 5th New Music Festival in Omsk (Russia). The driving spirit and artistic leader of the festival is Dmitry Vasiljev, chef-conductor of the Omsk Philharmonics Orchestra. The main attention in the program goes for fresh tendentions and music innovation. Amongst the festival’s premieres will be the special written for the festival ‘The Age of Eternal Expectation’ for orchestra by Alexander Khubeev. Further on the program ‘Forellenquintet’ by Pavel Karmanov, ‘Oi, vo pole’ and ‘Toccata & Canzone’ by Olga Victorova and ‘Riot of the Spring’ by Dmitry Kourliandski.

More info about the concerts

Dmitry Kourliandski

Olga Victorova

Alexander Khubeev

Pavel Karmanov

Bram van Camp

Bram Van Camp (Antwerp °1980) graduated from the Royal Flemish Conservatory of Music in Antwerp (2003) where he studied the violin, chamber music, composition, music analysis, counterpoint and fugue. He studied composition under Wim Henderickx (1998-2005) and Theo Loevendie (2003-2005) at the Conservatory of Amsterdam. His works contain solo and chamber music, ensemble works, orchestral music (including a symphony called Tetrahedron ), a Violin Concerto and Piano Concerto and a song cycle (The Feasts of Fear and Agony, inspired by poems by the Flemish poet Paul Van Ostaijen).

Prizes
He has received many prizes for his work as a composer: in 1999 he won the Aquarius Composition Competition with Rhapsody for violin and orchestra. In 2002 he won the BAP prize (Belgian Artistic Promotion) awarded by SABAM, for his Trio for clarinet, viola and piano (2000). His String Quartet (2004) and his The Feasts of Fear and Agony (2012) were selected for the ISCM Catalogue (International Society for Contemporary Music). In 2007 he won the Jeugd en Muziek Prijs voor Compositie (Youth & Music Award for Composition) and in 2014 his String Quartet (2004) won the second prize at the International Composition Contest ‘New Note’ in Croatia.

Commissions
His compositions were commissioned by several organizations: the ‘Festival of Flanders’, the TRANSIT New Music Festival, ‘deSingel’ (Antwerp) and the Ars Musica Festival. His works are performed by (among others) the Arditti Quartet, Hermes Ensemble, I Solisti, Antwerp Symphony Orchestra, the Flanders Symphony Orchestra, Het Collectief, Oxalys, Blindman Collective, Wibert Aerts, Piet Van Bockstal and Jan Michiels. Furthermore, his works are performed in various Belgian concert houses, including deSingel, BOZAR and the Concertgebouw Brugge. From 2012 his work was also programmed in London and at the Amsterdam Concertgebouw, Croatia, Denmark and Slovakia.

His portret cd (including The Feasts of Fear and Agony, Music for 3 instruments and Improvisations ) recorded by Het Collectief in 2013 (Fuga Libera) was higly praised at home and abroad, including 5 stars in Diapason (Fr) and The Gramophone (GB).

Style
In creating his music Bram Van Camp always strives for a style with an intuitive starting point in which each note can still be explained within its own consistent system. He always keeps a musical and organic sounding result in mind. In this way, his composition system does not constitute a goal in itself, but is used as a means to a natural sounding essence: the actual organic music. To him composing is a quest in which he always tries to renew his style compared to his previous compositions. On the philosophical level a clear similarity with György Ligeti can be detected. His stylistic roots originate from Béla Bartók, Igor Stravinsky and Alban Berg.

Because of his penchant for natural, organic musical freedom, his music is often influenced by jazz music.

Bram Van Camp is professor of composition at the Royal Conservatoire of Antwerp and at the Academies of Merksem and Schoten. He is also the initiator of The Times, a forum for young composers organized by the Hermes Ensemble, where he acts as coach each year.

Jussen brothers play Roukens

On March 10 the Jussen brothers will give the world premiere of Joey Roukens – In Unison in the Concertgebouw in Amsterdam. With the Radio Filharmonic Orchestra and conductor Emilio Pomàrico. Unison was commissioned by the NTR ZaterdagMatinee for the Jussen brothers as soloists…   

Before I started composing, I listened to their CDs and was struck not only by the sparkling brilliance of their playing, but also by the fact that they sounded perfect as a duo. Gradually, the idea arose to write a double concerto in which the two soloists would not sound as two separate soloists, but as if they were as one super pianist on one super piano. This means that there are many unison passages (both pianos having exactly the same notes) in the piece. In any case, the unisono is an element that often pops up in my work, perhaps a legacy of the “Dutch musical tradition.” My plan was to go for the classic design in three parts (fast-slow-fast). While I was working on the piece, I was in a period when I played a lot of Italian baroque concertos on the piano, and something of that pianistic style might be heard in the solo parts in this piece.

(Joey Roukens)

More info about the concert

In Unison at Donemus

Olivier Greif

Olivier Greif was born in Paris on January 3rd, 1950. His father had studied piano in Poland before moving to France and becoming a doctor. A precocious child, Olivier discovered music at age three in a progressive kindergarten. Admitted to the Paris National Conservatory at age ten, he studied piano with Lucette Descaves and composition with Tony Aubin. He received his composition prize in 1967.

In 1970, he went to New York City to study with Luciano Berio in Juilliard School. He followed his master to Santa Fe as an assistant for the creation of Berio’s work Opera.

From 1961 to 1981, he composed a first series of works. His style was quite personal, unaffected by current trends.

Unhinged by the illness and death of his mother (in 1978), he found solace in meditation and the teachings of a New York-based Indian guru. After composing a Requiem sonata for cello and piano celebrating the memory of his mother (in 1979) and a small opera, Nô (in 1981), he stopped writing classical music altogether during ten years. He became his guru’s Kapellmeister. He founded choirs of disciples in France and other European countries, composed pieces for the choirs based on his guru’s words and tunes, went on tour with the French choir around the world.

In 1991, he resumed his career as a classical composer. He wrote a new series of dark and intense pieces, marked by themes he had always been familiar with: the war, his father’s stay in Auschwitz, the loss of most of his family in the death camps. Lettres de Westerbork for voice and two violins (1993) is based on Hetty Hillesum’s letters from the Westerbok camp. Olivier Greif put Paul Celan’s poems to music in his Symphony with voice (1997) and in a great chamber music work, L’office des naufragés (1998). Most of his important works can be heard on YouTube and Spotify.

Having been badly ill twice, he died suddenly at home on May 13, 2000, aged fifty. The autopsy didn’t reveal the cause of his death.

His two brothers, with the help of Olivier’s closest friends, founded an Olivier Greif society to help his music be better known. The society finances concerts, recordings, the engraving and publishing of scores, etc. The society’s website: http://www.oliviergreif.com, includes a list of current concerts, a complete list of concerts since 1957, a biography, a detailed catalog of the music, a list of records, several photographs of Olivier and a form for joining the society

Jean Jacques Greif © 2017

Robert Nasveld by the ‘Utrechtse Studenten Cantorij’

Robert Nasveld together with Ton de Leeuw and Douwe Eisenga in the concert called ‘Time out! by the ‘Utrechtse Studenten Cantorij’ on March 18, 23 and 24 in Soest, Utrecht and Middelburg. World premiere of the new version of the composition ‘My wife and I’ based on hotel reviews presented at Bol.com by funny Google translations….   

Robert Nasveld wrote the composition Me and my wife (2012/2016) for five and six part choir alone.

Commissioned by the Fonds Podiumkunsten for the Utrechtse Studenten Cantorij, conducted by Fokko Oldenhuis. World premiere April 20, 2013 in the Nicolaï Church in Utrecht within the frame of the Peace of Utrecht. World premiere of the a cappella version March 23, 2018 in the Academiegebouw, Utrecht.

Me and my wife was originally written for accordion, harp, percussion and mixed choir and consists of three songs. The texts are reviews about hotels and restaurants, found on the internet and are only in Dutch (see Dutch page).

The occassional combination of chorus with accordeon, harp and percussion has the disadvantage that the number of performances will be limited. The transcription for five to six part unaccompanied chorus was possible because of the strong independent role of the choir.

The same concert will have a performance of ‘A settee heure du jour’ of Ton de Leeuw and a new work by Douwe Eisenga.

More about the concert by the USC

Me and my wife at Donemus

Website Robert Nasveld

Sioumak and Voronov in premiere at Sochi

Valery Voronov (Germany) – Kanchenjunga (The Five Treasures of the Great Snow); The great elegy for viola and large orchestra
and Alexey Sioumak (Russia) – King Lear; for string quartet, percussion and string orchestra, have both a world premiere at the XI international Winter arts festival in Sochi…   

King Lear’ by Sioumak will be performed by Jury Bashmet and ensemble Moscow Soloists at the gala-opening concert of the festival in Winter Theater.

More about Alexey Sioumak

Info about the concert

The viola-concerto by Valery Voronov inspired by the titel of a painting by Nikolay Rerich will close the same festival in performance by Yury Bashmet and Russian Youth Symphony Orchestra.

Info about the concert