Monday 9 March 2009

Ligeti, Free Stuff, Again (and some Xenakis).

Ligeti: 'What?, me?, again?!, great!!'

I just can't help it at the moment, it seems the great man keeps appearing all over the place. This week Ligeti is BBC Radio 3's composer of the week (my Dad who listens to Radio 3 said to me today 'your mate's on the radio this week').

For those of you unfamiliar with the format, it's a one hour long programme with music and discussion broadcast every weekday (here is the Radio 3 schedule), these programmes are then archived for a short time (7 days I think). I have no idea how it all works if you are outside of the UK (though I think you can access the programmes, not sure though, good luck).

Then, Ligeti's Violin Concerto is on Performance on 3 on Friday at 7pm, and, while i'm at it, there is an edition of Radio 3's excellent Discovering Music series about the Violin Concerto which you can listen to as part of their archive (also you'll find a link to an interview with John Tusa).

And, Xenakis's music is featured on Performance on 3 tomorrow at 7pm again...(an event connected to the one covered by Lizzie a couple of posts ago).
A concert given at the Barbican, London, featuring the music of Iannis Xenakis, described by Olivier Messiaen as 'a hero unlike any other'. Xenakis's very original music has many complex rhythmic patterns, polyphonic melodies and distinct instrumental and vocal textures and draws on his training as an architect and his work as assistant to Le Corbusier. In his piece Nuits, voices explore the phonetic sounds of Sumerian and ancient Persian.

Christian Lindberg (trombone)
Rolf Hind (piano)
BBC Singers
BBC Symphony Orchestra
Martyn Brabbins (conductor)
Stephen Betteridge (conductor)

Xenakis: Tracees; Anastenaria; Sea-Nymphs; Mists; Nuits; Troorkh; Antikhthon


Babette said...

Just finished catching up on the Composer of the Week programmes. My favourite programme was probably the first - I really enjoyed his Piano Etudes. The second track is beautiful. (I ordered the scores this morning). George Benjamin was a good choice of guest presenter, obviously very knowledgeable and informative about Ligeti as a person as well as how he composes. I started reading Ligeti’s biography ‘Music of the Imagination’ last week so rather a coincidence he was featured all week on BBC3 (rarely listen to the radio so cheers for blog otherwise I wouldn’t have known). Not so keen on his vocal music though, having said that The Lobster Quadrille was pretty comical (in a good way) and what an imaginative name for a piece. (From Alice in Wonderland - he seems to like imagined other worlds. I read that when he was a child he imagined a country called Kylwira and thought up a whole language, society and landscape for it!). What did you think of the performance of his Violin Concerto? The violinist, Alina Ibragimova, is playing at the Birmingham Hall in May, not Ligeti though, some of Bach’s work I think.

E.L. said...

You mean the second etude? Cordes a vide?

If that's the one you mean then yes, very nice (smart move, making those open fifths sound so interesting, similar to the beginning of Melodien with those ascending chromatic patterns, common scale/intervals but deployed in a very 'crafty' fashion.)

Steinitz's book is good, you'll enjoy it I think (I haven't read it for a while, might do again once ive got through the current bath of stuff I have to read.)

Not heard the violin concerto yet (ive heard it quite a few times before), I still need to catch up on the Xenakis concert before it gets taken off the Iplayer.

E.L. said...

Sorry *batch, not bath (I usually use a bookshelf to store books, naturally.)

Babette said...

Yeah, I still have to finish listening to the Zenakis concert too. 7 days isn't a long time when there's lots you want to listen to (mind you, it is great that you can listen later so I shouldn't complain).

Babette said...

I meant Xenakis not Zenakis sorry, (its early & I always think of how you pronounce his name when I write it).