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BBC SO to present portrait of Argentine Composer Osvaldo Golijov13/02/2006
The BBC Symphony Orchestra and Christopher Cook are presenting a portrait concert of Osvaldo Golijov which will feature four premieres of the composer's work. Golijov's music has become familiar to audiences in the US but is still relatively unknown in the UK.
The concert, which will be broadcast by Radio 3 at 19.30 on 16th February, will feature Last Round (UK premiere); Tekyah (UK premiere); Ainadamar Arias and Ensembles (world premiere); Ayre (European premiere).
Classical website Andante shuts down02/02/2006
Andante.com, a web site whose stated goal was to be the leading classical music site on the internet has closed down, after it's French owners Naive told members of the site that it was no longer able to provide the resources to run the site.
Andante offered digital downloads of classical music as well as a large range of news and reviews.
Ian Wilson signs to Ricordi30/01/2006
In a busy month for new signings, Irish composer Ian Wilson has signed to Ricordi London.
UKs PRS goes online25/01/2006
Members of the UKs Performing Rights Society can now register new works online, saving the paperwork of the old 'pink forms'
Recently enhanced, the new online form makes registering a work with the PRS easier and more accurate.
Other online features include a searchable database of members and licences, as well as the potential gold mine of 'unclaimed performances'.
Watkins and Ayres join Schott14/01/2006
Schott has boldly increased its stable of UK composers, signing both Huw Watkins and Richards Ayres.
A partnership with Huw Watkins has been steadily developing over the past year and has seen new works for the Nash Ensemble, BCMG, the London Symphony Orchestra and the BBC Proms.
Richard Ayres’ impassioned, witty and highly imaginative music first came to prominence with a commission from the CBSO and most recently with his first opera, The Cricket Recovers, premiered by Almeida Opera at the 2005 Aldeburgh Festival.
New Chord in 639-Year Cage piece09/01/2006
A new chord was heard yesterday in a six-century-long organ performance of John Cage's Organ2/ASLSP ("As Slow as Possible").
Cage's 1992 piece originally lasted just 20 minutes (and was played on a piano). But a group of musicologists decided several years ago to take its title at face value, and initiated a 639-year performance of the work on a church organ in Halberstadt, Germany
The performance began in September 2001 with the inflation of the organ's bellows, followed by 18 months of silence. In February 2003, a chord was heard, and in July 2004 two notes were added. The new chord—an A, a C, and an F-sharp—will last until 2012.
Fans of experimental music have been flocking to the church , and the local village is booming as a result. The organ is being specially built for, and during, the concert. The organisers hope that enough money will be raised to fund new pipes in time for forthcoming new notes.
Get Carter! Weekend in London09/01/2006
Get Carter! Weekend in London
Friday 13 - Sunday 15 January
The BBC Symphony Orchestra's 2006 January Composer Weekend at the Barbican in London focuses on the influential American composer Elliott Carter, with three days of concerts, talks and films devoted to Carter's work, life and times.
Celebrating his 97th birthday in 2005 Elliott Carter has been composing for nearly 70 years. This weekend explores the gamut of his work, from such early miniatures as Harvest Home, written in 1937, to Of Rewaking, his acclaimed 2002 song-cycle. There will also be music by composers who were his friends and heroes including Ives, Stravinsky, Bartók, Copland, Sessions and Matthews.
For full information visit the BBCSO website
To order tickets visit the
Midori announces North American new music tour03/01/2006
Japanese violinist Midori has announced a March 06 tour of North America focussing exclusively on new music.
Composers to be featured on the American tour include Judith Weir, Isang Yun, Witold Lutoslawski, György Kurtág, and Alexander Goehr.
“For years I have been researching repertoire and formulating ideas about how best to perform and present the music of our time. Finally I have had the good fortune to be able to put some of these ideas into action,” she said in a statement.
György Kurtág wins 2006 Grawemeyer Award18/12/2005
Hungarian composer György Kurtág has won composition's most prized award, the 2006 University of Louisville Grawemeyer Award for Music Composition for his ‘…concertante…’ for violin, viola and orchestra, premiered in 2003.
The award, worth $200,000, is given annually by the Grawemeyer Foundation for a work that makes an outstanding contribution to the field of musical composition.
‘…concertante…’ was commissioned by the Leonie Sonning Foundation of Copenhagen and was premiered in September 2003 by violinist Hiromi Kikuchi and violist Ken Hakii accompanied by the Danish Radio Orchestra under Michael Schonwandt. Since then, the 25-minute score has been performed in Austria, France, Germany, Japan, the Netherlands and the USA.
In ‘…concertante…’ Kurtág has invented a sophisticated formal concept that holds characters ranging from ‘quasi silence’ to ferocious asymmetry in a sensitive equilibrium. The prize announcement describes how Kurtag’s “orchestra is used to full advantage but without overshadowing the role of the soloists. After ranging through many changes of mood, tempo and texture, from intimate to violent, the final section is mysterious and ambiguous.”
Previous winners include John Adams, Thomas Ades, Harrison Birtwistle, Pierre Boulez, Unsuk Chin, Aaron Jay Kernis, György Ligeti and Krzysztof Penderecki.
Donald Martino, Pulitzer Prize-winning composer dies18/12/2005
Donald Martino, the Pulitzer Prize-winning composer who headed the composition department at the New England Conservatory, died last week on a Caribbean cruise. He was 74.
Martino, who lived in Newton, had a heart attack after a diabetic episode, said the conservatory's public relations manager, Ellen Pfeifer. He led the Composition Department from 1969 to 1981.
Martino wrote Notturno, the now-classic chamber work for flutes, clarinets, violin/viola, cello, piano and percussion. The piece was honoured with the 1974 Pulitzer and has since been recorded numerous times. He was working on a new concertino for violin and 14 instruments commissioned by the Tanglewood Music Center when he died.
Martino was born in Plainfield, N.J. He graduated from Syracuse University and studied composition at Princeton and in Florence, Italy. He also taught at Brandeis University and Harvard before joining NEC.
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