Описание CD

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  Исполнитель(и) :
   Kagel, Mauricio  (Composer) , Koln Flittard (Conductor
◄◄◄        ►►►

  Наименование CD :
   1898. Music For Renaissance Instruments

Год издания : 1998

Компания звукозаписи : Deutsche Grammophon, (wb)

Время звучания : 1:13:41

Код CD : DG 459570

  Комментарий (рецензия) :

CD, стоящие на полке рядом : Classics (Modern Classics)      

Collegium Instrumentale Brugense Orchestra

## 1-2 - 1898, for children's chorus & ensemble (1973)

Mauricio Kagel completed 1898 for children's voices and instruments in 1973. Deutsche Grammophon commissioned the work in commemoration of its seventy-fifth anniversary (1898-1973). It is in two movements and is slightly less than fifty minutes in duration. Kagel's career and output was uneven, often writing music that was humorous to like-minded intellectuals and politicos. His absurdist leanings tended to fall into a category of gags that were of some trumped-up agit-art value that wore out most listeners long before the works themselves ended. However, when he chose to write a communicative piece, he did so with such a fluency and stylistic strength that imparts upon Kagel his rightful though frustrating legitimacy. He is in fact an excellent composer, and 1898 is a lovely, gentle, and relentlessly listenable piece.

Kagel's own explanations of his works tend to be remote to non-scholars, but little explanation is needed to make this work accessible to those who are approaching Kagel for the first time. 1898 does not use complex harmonies or rigorous alternate syntax. Two melodic threads are woven together loosely in a way that the composer regarded as indicative of the end of nineteenth-century music. The date 1898 is also the year when records more or less began to be mass-produced. These are clearly important points in music history. Newer, more radical music was around the corner, and people could now listen to orchestras and chamber music at home. With tonality about to be broken by Schoenberg within ten years (his first atonal pieces were written in the first decade of the twentieth century) Kagel wanted to reflect this change with music that "inhales tonally, and exhales atonally."

The stringed instruments that Kagel wanted used for this piece were those used when recording music was just getting started. He found a photograph of a recording session from 1910 that showed a recording orchestra using Stroh-violins, which replaced the stringed instrument's body with a metal disc and a brass bell similar to a trumpet's. This was supposed to enhance the player's volume for recording purposes. Kagel wanted to use these instruments to match the strings' timbres to those of the trumpet, tuba, French horn, trombone, etc. He could not find the actual instruments themselves, and so redesigned them with a friend in Germany who was capable of producing a satisfactory ersatz Stroh instrument. It was only after the items were in production that another friend brought back an actual Stroh-cello. It was discovered that a music dealer who had sold the Stroh-cello had in fact many more of the instruments in an attic in Baghdad. It was therefore possible to make accurate recordings and performances that feature the exact sound that the composer wanted. The children's choir does not employ conventional choral parts. They include laughter and vocal effects that anyone can make. Kagel wanted "the spontaneous reaction of untrained voices in ... a strict context." This is what really brings the work to life.

1898 concerns the falling apart of one musical language and the birth of another. It is a sort of disaster that creates a new, less easily recognized, musical syntax. The fact that it all took place when the phonograph made music more commercially accessible is a historical irony. Adding the sounds children's laughter takes the sting out of this weird trade off. As well, the children's sounds are effortless, fun, and made musical in this setting. The optimism that this juxtaposition creates is not unqualified, but it makes it easier to approach the idea of getting the public behind new music again.

-John Keillor

#3 - Music for Renaissance Instruments, for 23 players (1973)

Mauricio Kagel completed Music for Renaissance Instruments in 1966. It is dedicated to Claudio Monteverdi and readdresses some Renaissance musical practices without referring to it directly. There is no music from that period in Kagel's piece, no quotes or formal references. The composer once attempted to make a similar piece that involved Renaissance instruments when he was still a musicology student in Argentina, but there were not enough instruments from that period available to make his piece actually work. In the 1960s, there was a new interest in early music and period performance, which meant that information about Renaissance music and period instrument makers were suddenly abundant. The work was now a genuine possibility. Kagel wanted his work to feature instruments depicted by Michael Praetorius in his 1619 Syntagma Musicum, a famous lexicon of musical information The work is written for an ideal twenty-three performers, but true to Renaissance musical practice, between two and twenty-two performers could also realize this piece properly. Ensembles in Monteverdi's time usually consisted of whoever showed up to play. However, Kagel's way of adapting to this practice has little to do with how it was done back then. In fact, his way of conforming to the ancient way of doing things makes the work all the more avant-garde. The form is highly inventive and while there is usually a lot going on, the sound itself is never cluttered. The primary idea of the piece is to show the diversity and strength of timbres among instruments from the Renaissance period.

The sounds and associations that Kagel creates with this ensemble work are extraordinary. Many of the masses of sound that come out of the performance are bizarrely suggestive of Ligeti's micropolyphony from the 1960s and many the electronic sounds made by the Cologne's electronic composers in the 1950s. Because Kagel has been widely regarded as the prankster of the avant-garde, it is impossible to know if this was a deliberate similarity. He studied in Cologne and certainly knew Ligeti's music, if not the man personally. This work is not a stunt; it is a fine piece of well-ordered music. Many of Kagel's pieces are little more than dadaist gags, but works such as this reveal a first-rate command of his craft and the talent to make new and worthwhile music. It is original in spite of its similarities to comparable music if the period. A lot goes on in Music for Renaissance Instruments, with new combinations providing always new and varying material. It is frequently an eerie sound, primarily focusing on the timbres in combination, revealing a fresh palette of color consistently. Music for Renaissance Instruments requires enormous technical skill to perform. When Kagel first attempted to write this sort of piece, it was not only the absence of instruments that made the work's performance implausible. The lack of musicians who could play the music he wanted to hear on period instruments was equally a problem. Not only were the specific lines beyond the reach of most performers, but many of the extended techniques in the work eluded the musicians as well. Another similarity to Ligeti's writing in this work is the use of flaws in the instrument's engineering. Kagel demands that some winds be blown so that air is audibly released in ways that standard performance practice teaches players to avoid. Music for Renaissance Instruments turned out to be a wonderful piece, one of the good Kagel works. It is always a pleasure to discover another one.

-John Keillor

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Наименование трека



   1 1st Movement         0:25:26 Mauricio Kagel 1898, For Children's Chorus & Ensemble For Children's Voices And Instruments
   2 2nd Movement         0:23:05 -"-
   3 Collegium Instrumentale         0:25:10 Mauricio Kagel Music For Renaissance Instruments, For 23 Players


 T   'щелкнуть' - переход к тексту композиции.

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