Jadwiga Kotnowska in Hanna Kulenty’s Flute Concerto Nº 3

Geplaatst op

On March 30the the famous flute player Jadwiga Kotnowska will give the world premiere of Hanna Kulenty’s Flute Concerto nº 3 at Katowice by the Polish National Radio Symphony Orchestra (NOSPR). Read more about this exciting premiere…   

“Flute Concerto No.3” was commissioned by the outstanding flute soloist Jadwiga Kotnowska and the Symphony Orchestra of the National Polish Radio Symphony Orchestra. the world premiere will be on March 31.

A one-movement piece lasting about 25 minutes. It is written in Hanna Kulenty’s new technique, which she called “Musique Surrealistique”. She has been using this technique for several years. This is an attempt to embrace the sounds of mathesis, space-time – which she always did – but this time in a more perfect form.

“Musique surrealistique” is a juxtaposition of sound and time structures in a way to give the whole work a new kind of feeling. Kulenty does not reject so much all components of musical ingredients used so far, such as the language of music, compositional techniques, etc., but she rejects, all the types of construction techniques needed to arrange these elements. She just reassembles them. That’s why she is not afraid of “rubbing” against the so-called conventions.

First of all, she is reassembling emotions. She builds a trance, where intuition doesn’t play the main role so much, but injury – this kind of insight, which everyone has, although not everyone knows about it, and which reveals the presence of some greater than human strength, some unity above differentiation, despite everything.

Hanna says about her music: “We sail. The water level rises or we immerse ourselves. Water space slows down movements, words; drowns them out. The details and colours are exaggerated, which leads to a new, one might say inhuman face”. Of course, the form controls the musical content in the best possible proportions and balance, which is needed to sharpen the more spiritual aspects of the work and less technical ones.

“Flute Concerto No.3” is a cascade of very fast sound sequences – “times”, which gradually slow down – albeit unpredictably – creating a new kind of narration, a new kind of “time”, an increasingly slowed time until it stops almost completely. “Almost” makes a difference here, because if we stopped this narrative – this “free time”, the work would end, but it does not. The narrative is like “frozen”.

The releasing sound cascades of the solo flute are supported by an electronic delay, which is only occasionally switched off in order to reduce the reflective, overlapping layers of music. The flute also has a so-called “glissando head” attachment, which allows you to play a smooth glissando to a greater interval range – even to a quarter, which in the case of a flute without this attachment is impossible. The orchestra is composed in such a way as to be (as if) a natural “delay” of the solo flute.

All these layers transform each other, exchange structures, “reflect” their structures and finally slow down but do not stop to finally reveal themselves with pseudo-cadence, not so much with the solo flute, but with the whole form. It is like a surrealist waltz. Jazz? Pop? Rock? We are in a different “slow time-world”, which turns into a new kind of music, and thus a new kind of narration. This new narration also starts to slow down. The new “very slow time” keeps you in suspense, because you never know when it will slow down or when it will accelerate when it will “freeze”. The unpredictability is in the details. However, predictability is such that we slow down and, what is interesting, we are waiting for it! (It’s as if we watched the sunset where the movement of the Earth can be seen. We seem to know what will happen, but we look at one point and wait in tension for what is inevitable…. ).

After such a “suspension”, a pseudo-cadence of form – consisting in the greatest release of material, the whole gradually returns to the starting point. So we speed up the whole form. This takes place much faster and smoother than in the case of the release process. The sound cascades of the solo flute, interwoven with a heterophonically treated orchestra, return almost immediately after a surrealist waltz. They are modified and are the culmination of the work. Created by these “time turbulences”, the trance holds in suspense from the beginning to the end of the work.

That’s why she doe not focus on the technical aspects of composition, but tries to deal with those aspects that are most important to her: metaphysics and the kind of magic that is supposed to touch us, move us and enrich us spiritually.

More info about the concert

Link to the score