The programmme brochure of 35th Slovenian Music Days is available here.
Janez Podlesek, violin
Jan Sever, piano
Marij Kogoj: Andante for violin and piano
Maja Matić: In Search of Silence*
Wolfgang Rihm: Phantom und Eskapade
Rebecca Saunders: Duo for violin and piano
Peter Šavli: Spell II*
* premiere performance
This concert, part of the Concert Atelier of the Society of Slovene Composers, opens with a work by the Expressionist composer Marij Kogoj (1892–1956). More misunderstood than not in his lifetime, Kogoj nevertheless left an indelible mark on Slovene music. The Andante for violin and piano carries a great deal of weight in Kogoj’s modest chamber oeuvre. It reveals the composer’s intimate sound world, which is based on the value of direct inner expression and manifests itself in his composition technique through the somewhat improvisational shaping of the musical material. The concert programme also includes two new works for violin and piano by Slovene composers. Maja Matić (b. 1987), a member of the new generation of Slovene composers, graduated from the Ljubljana Conservatory of Music and Ballet before continuing her studies in Portugal and then the Netherlands, where she graduated in jazz composition and arrangement from Codarts Rotterdam. She composes for various jazz and classical ensembles and is also a jazz pianist and a teacher of piano and composition. Peter Šavli (b. 1961) is an established composer and a teacher at the Ljubljana Conservatory of Music and Ballet and the Ljubljana Academy of Music. Šavli’s highly melodic oeuvre, characterised by a polished harmonic language, contains a number of solo and chamber works for violin, but Urok II (“Spell II”) is his first work for violin and piano. It combines improvisation and controlled elements in psychologically and spiritually mysterious dimensions. Completing the concert programme are two substantial works by non-Slovene composers. As may be seen from recent additions to the extensive and diverse oeuvre of Wolfgang Rihm (b. 1952), this distinguished and prolific German composer is returning to writing for violin and piano. Phantom und Eskapade, a series of fantastic episodes that together form a solid whole, was composed in 1993–94. Acclaimed Berlin-based British composer Rebecca Saunders (b. 1961), the winner of the 2019 international Ernst von Siemens Music Prize, composed her piece Duo for violin and piano just a few years later, in 1996 (revised 1999). She has said, of her creative process, that when composing she imagines holding the sounds and noises in her hands, feeling their potential between her palms, weighing them. The pieces in the programme will be performed by two excellent interpreters: violinist Janez Podlesek, concertmaster of the Slovene Philharmonic String Chamber Orchestra and a teacher at the Ljubljana Academy of Music; and the acclaimed pianist Jan Sever, who is chiefly active in classical chamber ensembles but has also been working in other musical genres in recent years.
Helena Filipčič Gardina