Concert series The New Music Orchestra

The New Music Orchestra

What is new music? Is it the opposite of "old" or "early" music, its continuation and extension of tradition, or rather a definite act of rebellion and breaking off from the past? Why do we have "new music" in the first place? Didn't they only play new things at the times of Bach and Mozart? So, what has changed that we willingly go back to "museum pieces"?

The whole surrounding world has changed. As a result of scientific, technological and communication development, more has happened in the world over the past ten years than it did over 500 years in the Middle Ages. These days, specialisation is so developed that the man in the street can hardly understand quarks, gravitons, and other notions of physics, or complicated integrated circuits in devices we use every day, such as mobile phones or computers. Nevertheless, we all make use of innovations developed by pioneers.

A composer is in a way a researcher or a lonely wanderer. They often go to places which nobody has visited before – such is their task. Their music is a result of sensitive perception of the surrounding world and their mental (or maybe spiritual) inside. The present times are extremely interesting, yet full of tensions, dilemmas, quests. Artistic quests are often an attempt to reach the crux of the matter, whatever it may be.

The third edition of the New Music Orchestra series at the NOSPR presents “the music of silence”. The repertoire we proposed in the past seasons included many highly expressive pieces. They often based on maximum dynamic contrast and highly complicated texture, with many melodic, harmonic and rhythmic planes, which makes them extremely difficult for the audience upon first listening. But there are other works being composed these days. Rothko Chapel by Morton Feldman and Midday Prayers by Giya Kancheli – part of the Life without Christmas cycle – which are on the programme for this season, are examples of music of reverie and mediation, where economy of expression is conducive to concentration and contemplation.

At the same time we will continue our exploration of the borderland. Adam Bałdych, famous jazz violinist and improviser, will write Syriac Psalms – especially for us – which he will later perform with the New Music Orchestra, an improvising jazz band and outstanding Syrian singer Dima Orsho. The soloists of the Kwadrofonik band will start their music journey towards jazz and improvisation with Béla Bartók’s Sonata for two pianos and percussion, version for orchestra. Next, through the superb M is for Man, Music, Mozart by Louis Andriessen, composed for a Peter Greenaway film, we will move towards a joint improvisation in the finale, performed by the New Music Orchestra and guest artists.

As a result of the funding received from the Ministry of Culture and National Heritage, this season, for the first time, we will host two residents: composer Paweł Hendrich, with whom we have collaborated for the past ten years, and Rafał Łuc, accordionist from Wrocław.

The year 2016/ 2017 is a jubilee season for the New Music Orchestra – we are celebrating our 20th anniversary. We also remember another important date: this year the late Andrzej Krzanowski would have celebrated his 65th birthday. It is to him that we dedicate our opening concert. We will host eminent Polish and foreign soloists, such as Julia Samojło, Agata Zubel, Jakob Kullberg and Michele Marelli. We hope that, like the concerts we played at the NOSPR chamber hall in the previous seasons, this year’s programme will draw an enthusiastic audience. We are waiting for you to jointly discover and blaze new artistic trails, to share the moments of reverie and contemplation, and most of all, to experience this beautiful, intriguing music together.

See you in the concert hall!

Szymon Bywalec

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