Michael Fine ‘At the Gate’; world premiere in Mexico

An orchestral overture ‘ At The Gate’ by Michael Fine will be performed in Mexico in the philharmonics regular subscription series.
‘This orchestral overture has nothing to do with airports…   

‘This orchestral overture has nothing to do with airports, though my friends may easily make this assumption due to the peripatetic nature of my work, but rather the beautiful gate at Deoksugang Palace in Seoul. Although surrounded by modern buildings, the Gate opens to the graceful and elegant palace grounds taking one back to another Korea before western influences. The overture reflects both worlds but ends in the distant past or at least the way I imagine it was.’(Michael Fine)

Premiere Olga Victorova in Vilnius (Lithuania)

The new composition “Sutartines” for violin solo and string orchestra was commissioned to Olga Victorova by the Lithuanian chamber orchestra and its artistic director, famous violinst-virtouse Sergey Krylov. The piece is based on Lithuanian folk songs, taken from a book by Z. Slavjunas “Sutartines, Polyphonic chants of Lithuanian folk”….  

Sutartines” is to be performed without a conductor. A soloist moves freely on the stage while performing and playing Lithuanian sutartines to different orchestra groups that repeat the themes canonically.

The Lithuanian Chamber Orchestra and its Artistic Director and Conductor violinist Sergej Krylov (picture) commence the celebration of the centenary of the re-establishment of Lithuanian statehood, which will be widely celebrated in the country.

Olga Victorova’s huge oratorio “Exodus” will be premiered in Nantes on February 3 with 2 more upcoming performances.

More about the concert

More about Olga Victorova

Retinsky’s Marian Antiphones conducted by Currentzis

Teodor Currentzis will conduct the ‘Salve Regina’, part of the ‘Marian Antiphons’ composed by Alexey Retinsky.
On February 8 at the Moscow Conservatory with the famous Choir “Musica aeterna”…   

The Marian Antiphons were commissioned by the conductor Olga Prykhodko, with financial support of the Institute of Religious Sciences St. Thomas Aquinas in Kyiv. The cycle is dedicated to the 800th anniversary of the Dominican Order (Ordo Fratrum praedicatorum). The First recording was made by Ensemble Alter Ratio in 2017.

The joy of working on Marian Antiphons consisted in the fact that I only had to create favorable conditions for a future tree like a gardener, almost impartially watching him grow independently. Everything else was due to the fruitful soil of the prayerful Latin texts, every moment being ready to let a seed-sound die to be further born again. (Alexey Retinsky/2016)

Marian Antiphons at Donemus

Alexey Retinsky at Donemus

Link to the concert

Donemus in 2017

Missed our network drink at The Penthouse in The Hague? Enjoy our presentation to look back to 2017 and see the brief summery of our activities…   

14,000 compositions;
650 composers;
80,000 PDFs;
1,4 million digitzed pages;
500 new titles in 2017;
1,000 daily views;
1.9 concerts daily.

A few examples of orders last week
Michale Fine – Mexico
Karel Goeyvaerts – Russia
Vladimir Martynov – Sri Lanka
Rudolf Escher – Tokyo
Leo Smit – Sweden/South Korea
Daan Manneke – New York

Klas Torstensson ‘Composer in Focus’ at De Doelen in 2018!

One of our most prominent composers, Dutch-Swedish Klas Torstensson, will be ‘composer in focus’ at De Doelen in Rotterdam in 2018. During this retrospective year many of his vibrant compositions will be performed at ‘portrait concerts’ in De Doelen.  

Concerts will include both recent and older – ‘classic’ – works, scored for (mostly) large ensemble.
The retrospective kicks off on 14 January: ‘The Birthday Party’.

Klas Torstensson‘sBirthday Party‘ contains two concerts and a dinner in the Stadsbrasserie. In the afternoon there is a semi-staged performance of ‘In grosser Sehnsucht‘, dedicated to and performed by soprano Charlotte Riedijk – her previous performance of the five characters was called by newspaper Trouw ‘astonishing‘. In the evening the Doelen Ensemble performs Sönerna and No Slash, and the combined version of these two: ‘Elliott loves bebop‘ (a Dutch premiere).

More info about ‘The Birthday Party

Article about Klas Torstensson

World premiere Jan-Peter de Graaff at the Zaterdagmatinee

At the concert of Saturday, January 13th the Residentie Orkest will perform the premiere of Jan-Peter de Graaff – ‘Le café de suit’ at the Concertgebouw in Amsterdam

“Le café de nuit” is a 13-minute fantasia/nocturne for orchestra, based on the painting (with the same name) bij Vincent van Gogh, and the letters he wrote to this brother Theo during his stay in Arles, where he rented a studio above the café. In the letters, he describes this place as “a place where you can ruin yourself, go mad, commit crimes”. This subject really interested me as a composer as there is really a conflict within the concept of a café. Usually, one goes to a café to escape the ongoing world and everyday problems, to dance, to celebrate life and to drink and go drunk to immerse oneself in a different reality. However, there is a danger, as van Gogh states, as the café also influences the world outside. It is a place where the darkest side of human behaviour emerges. In the piece I tried to find this strange balance between joy and danger, between alertness (or even panic) and being drunk, between passion and truth.

More about the concert

Le Café de Nuit at Donemus

Featured composer Jan-Peter de Graaff 

Maxim Shalygin’s Lacrimosa or 13 Magic Songs

The Lacrimosa or 13 Magic Songs are a lamentation, man’s final prayer before Judgement. This prayer can at once be terse and show the various states of man: gleeful, repenting, fearful, lamenting, faithful… During the performance of the 13 Songs, the listener’s souls are supposed to pass through a series of excruciating, expressive stages and finally reach a catharsis….  

The Requiem has developed from the funeral mass and become widely popular as a secular type of sacred music. Arguably because of its subject matter, the genre hasn’t died during the 20th century; it has lived on, with works by Britten, Ligeti, Schnittke and Penderecki expressing how their authors longed for reconciliation with, and forgiveness from, the world and themselves.

The heart of the Requiem is the Dies Irae, well known for the words with which it opens but, thanks to Mozart, no less for its conclusive lines:
Ah! that day of tears and mourning,
From the dust of earth returning
Man for judgement must prepare him,
Spare, O God, in mercy spare him.
Lord, all-pitying, Jesus blest,
Grant them Thine eternal rest. Amen.

It is exactly this prayer for forgiveness and reconciliation that has won the Requiem its popularity. Although many Requiem varieties exist, to our knowledge no purely instrumental version has been composed yet. The Lacrimosa express an interesting and original view on the genre, in which violins replace human voices, sounding now as a prayerful chant, then as a malignant howl or a bird song.

Most importantly, the parts relay an alternating perusal of the text of Lacrimosa as it is — perhaps the most strikingly human, prayerful words that exist, asking God for redemption and mercy.

The Lacrimosa or 13 Magic Songs are a lamentation, man’s final prayer before Judgement. This prayer can at once be terse and show the various states of man: gleeful, repenting, fearful, lamenting, faithful… During the performance of the 13 Songs, the listener’s souls are supposed to pass through a series of excruciating, expressive stages and finally reach a catharsis. This direction determines the cycle’s dramaturgic structure. The aim is to transform an immediate, openly emotional response to powerful impressions — something most contemporary art refuses to deal with — into the musical form of the Lacrimosa. For all the varied techniques to be applied in the work, its emphasis is on feelings, its aspiration to capture the listeners’ minds, immersing them in the affect of each part. This idea can be realized only by a multi-voice, single-timbre ensemble of violins, which are at once a unity and a multitude, one soul and its many voices, a number of people struggling to come at peace with the world, one another, and silence…

Composer’s note

Writing music for the common 20th-century types of classical ensembles that comprise a variety of instruments has lost its appeal to me over the last couple of years. My musical forms tend to show a reduction to homogeneous instrumental compositions: the Marian Antiphons for 12 voices a cappella, the Insane Dances for saxophone quartet, Six Bagatelles for Two Violins, the Suite – Homage to Alfred Schnittke for three cellos, etc. Thus, I conceived of a cycle for a lifetime, entitled Similar. Its first chapter is to be the Lacrimosa or 13 Magic Songs  for seven violins.

Download the Flyer
Score at Donemus

19 January – Korzo, Den Haag
10 February – Kunsthuis Dat Bolwerck, Zutphen
13 February  – De Link, Tilburg

Helena Basilova presents: Alexander Basilov

Pianist Helena Basilova will present works written by her late father: pianist and componser Alexander Basilov (1946-2007). This concert will be an tribute to this composer who is still unknown in the Netherlands, who studied with Alfred Schnittke and lived in Moscow, Russia…  

Alexander Basilov (1946-2007) was a Russian composer and pianist who lived and worked in Moscow, Russia. Inspired by composers like Alfred Schnittke, Frederik Chopin, Sergei Rachmaninov and Rodion Shedrin, Alexander Basilov wrote over one hundred works, focusing on piano literature and vocal repertoire.

Additionally, he composed a large number of choir works, music-theatre plays and orchestral pieces. This very special concert features own daughter and pianist Helena Basilova who spent the last few years finding, researching and studying his compositions. She has also overseen publication of a selection of his chamber music works together with Donemus Publishing House.

Link to the concert

Alexander Basilov at Donemus

Read more….

Kulenty; Concerto Rosso – world premiere!

On December 3 Hanna Kulenty’s ‘Concerto Rosso’ will have its world premiere at the National Forum of Music, Main Hall, Wrocław (PL). Read the personal notes of Hanna on this impressive composition…  

Concerto Rosso’ (2017) is a sort of concerto grosso, because it was written for string quartet and string orchestra, especially for Atom String Quartet and Leopoldinum String Orchestra. I liked to name it ‘rosso’ for a good reason. It fits my new composition style that I came up with a few years ago, called ‘musique surrealistique’. In this style I not only try to ‘transform’ the nature and music conventions but above all the emotions connected with music… It is like drinking a good glass of red wine, after which you can also change a bit or transform… is it not? Of course this is a metaphor and I do not encourage you to get drunk while composing. I myself don’t do this, but what I try to do is to transform reality into my new composition technique. So far I manage to maintain a proper balance between content and form, and the musical language that I cultivate does not disturb (generally speaking) the harmony of the universe…
Concerto Rosso’ – although composed in strict measures – gives great possibilities for improvisation. Let me put it like this: I prefer to write exactly what I want to hear. From there you can move away, rather than doing it the opposite way: in a sense I am the architect of the idea where the musical material is more controlled by the performers. I myself improvise and play jazz too … It will be good!

(Hanna Kulenty, november 2017)

Info about the concert

FD Persoonlijk interviews Van Peursen

The FD Persoonlijk (Personal Magazine of the Dutch Financial Newspaper) placed an article on Davo van Peursen as one of the 3 portraits entrepreneurs in classical music….   

‘Every composer has a personal identity. If they extend that, there is room for everyone’, says Davo van Peursen, CEO of Donemus Publishing.

‘Mozart, Bach, Schubert: classical music of last centuries is known by many. Contemporary music is not that popular. Such a pity, because it deepens, widens, connects and above all: it holds us a mirror, because it is made in the time in which we live.

Read the article (Dutch)