Andrew Schultz music news

Blog and news for www.andrewschultz.net

Endling with Sydney Symphony Orchestra

 

The Sydney Symphony Orchestra/Toby Thatcher present Andrew Schultz’s orchestral work Endling (2007) on their forthcoming tour of regional New South Wales. The programs also include works by Mozart, Schubert and Prokofiev.

The concerts are at:

Newcastle – Civic Theatre, Tuesday 24 May 2016, 7:30pm (more details and tickets)

Taree – Manning Entertainment Centre, Wednesday 25 May 2016, 7:30pm (more details and tickets)

Port Macquarie – Glasshouse, Friday 27 May 2016, 6:30pm (more details and tickets)

 

Civic Theatre promotional material:

“Hear the musicians of the SSO with dynamic young conductor Toby Thatcher in a program that begins at the heart of the orchestral repertoire with Mozart and ends with a cheeky nod to the Classical age by Prokofiev. In between are the vibrant and graceful melodies of Schubert’s Fifth Symphony and beautifully serene music by Andrew Schultz – soaring and noble sounds inspired by the transience of the natural world. The soloist for the night is SSO principal Ben Jacks, playing the most popular of the Mozart horn concertos in what promises to be an exhilarating performance.”

MOZART: Horn Concerto No. 4 in E flat, K495
SCHUBERT: Symphony No. 5
SCHULTZ: Endling
PROKOFIEV: Classical Symphony

 

Composer’s note about Endling:

Nature has defined the “endling” as the “last surviving individual of a species or plant.” This piece flows from a feeling of immense regret and sorrow about all that has been lost from the face of the earth.

Read more about the piece: www.andrewschultz.net/programs/endling.html

Read reviews of Endling from other performances: Endling reviews

 

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Night Flight in Melbourne

William Morris Hunt, The Horses of Anahita or The Flight of Night

William Morris Hunt, The Horses of Anahita or The Flight of Night (circa 1850)

 

The brilliant Sophie Rowell (violin) and Kristian Chong (piano) present a performance of Night Flight (2003) by Andrew Schultz in Melbourne in May 2016.

Monday 2 May 2016, 6 – 7pm, Salon, Melbourne Recital Centre31 Sturt StreetMelbourneVictoria, 3006 More Details

Night Flight was originally written as the fourth movement from a larger sextet, called “Mephisto”, in 1990. The Ukrainian virtuoso Dmitiri Tkachenko, who had played the violin part in that work on several occasions, commissioned this transcription for violin and piano for concerts with Kristian Chong in London in November 2003.  The piece is a danse macabre for the modern age. The idea for its frenetic energy came whilst taking off at night in an airplane and the work makes reference to the frantic and fantastic horse rides of Liszt’s Mephisto Waltz No. 2 and Schubert’s song, Erlkönig.

Who rides so late through the night and the wind?
It is the father with his child;
He folds the boy close in his arms,
He clasps him securely, he holds him warmly.
[Johann Goethe, Erlkönig, trans. Phillip Miller]

 

He said, she said: 2015 reviews

Here are selections from some of the reviews of music (live or recorded) by Andrew Schultz that have been published in the past twelve months. The reviews are arranged by the date order of the composition – with reviews of the newest pieces first. There are many more reviews and similar information at the main website (www.andrewschultz.net) which has just been updated for 2016.

 

Le Moliére Imaginaire (2015)

“Andrew Schultz’s new commissioned work, Le Moliére imaginaire captured the internal nature of the ensemble [I Fagiolini]: urbane, virtuosic, cultured, witty and naughty in equal measure, offering the only time in Musica Viva’s 70-year history that a performance has concluded with the words: ‘burning piss.’” [Carl Vine, “I Fagiolini’s Newcastle Concert,” Musica Viva Australia Blog, 28 July 2015.]

“Australian composer Andrew Schultz spread his wings even more widely with a wicked stagey swipe at all medicos in Le Moliére Imaginaire, with text by Timothy Knapman. A candidate for entry to the profession is quizzed by fuddy-duddies who approve the use of enemas for any ailment and applaud his aim to become rich. Pretentious pig Latin. Music to match chatty exchanges, pompous fuguey patch and hypocritical chorale.” [Elizabeth Silsbury, “I Fagiolini,” The Adelaide Advertiser, 2 August 2015.]

“…alluring harmonies alluding to jazz as well as harmonic dissonance. Staying true to the comedic aspect of a capella performance, there were even references to contemporary popular culture, such as Doctor Who or Renée Zellweger’s cosmetic surgery.” [Joseph Asquith, Musetiquette, 26 July 2015.]

“Andrew Schultz’s quizzically witty Le Moliére imaginaire, meanwhile called for less reverence. It takes the last scene of Moliére’s The Imaginary Invalid, a mock initiation ceremony for a quack doctor, and sets pious pig-Latin words by the ‘learned’ medicos against spoken English equivalents (devised by British writer Tim Knapman).” [Peter McCallum, “I Fagiolini,” Sydney Morning Herald, 27 July 2015.]

“Andrew Schultz’s setting of the last scene from Moliére’s Le Malade imaginaire, was specially commissioned by Musica Viva for I Fagiolini’s tour. Entitled Le Moliére imaginaire (Or: Keep Your Enemas Closer), this work should perhaps have come with a parental advisory, or maybe an advisory for more conservative members of the audience. The newly translated text is certainly in keeping with Moliére’s original idea of delivering a coruscating attack on the quackery of the medical profession, and relies heavily on scatological references, with some passing jibes at celebrities: ‘Rupertus Murdochio in magnum merdam cascado.’ If there was a mild possibility of offence at the lyrics, certainly none could be taken at the music, which leaned heavily towards the humorous rather than the ironic. Needless to say the singers delivered the work with great gusto, not least the final lines, ‘Infirmity’s eternal fountain long hard bouts of ‘burning piss.’” [Tony Way, “Review: I Fagiolini (Musica Viva) at Melbourne Recital Centre,” Limelight, 29 July 2015.]

 

Sound lur and serpent (2014)

“Eighteen brass players and another four or five percussionists arrayed along the back of the concert platform created a blazing raucous block of sound for Andrew Schultz’s fanfare, Sound Lur and Serpent, that was thrilling, attention grabbing and alarming.  As Schultz noted in the program, fanfares are used in mythology to signal and celebrate, but also to warn. Taking its inspiration from the Bronze Age brass instrument, the lur, and the tuba’s medieval ancestor the serpent, Schultz’s fanfare did all three. The sense of warning in this case was prompted by the Australian weather bureau’s decision in 2010 to issue a “catastrophic” fire warning, “extreme” no longer sufficing to account for the growing risk. It is an arresting piece drawing on elemental sonorities to potent affect.” [Peter McCallum, “Russian Romantics: thrilling, intense and fiery with the Sydney Symphony Orchestra,” Sydney Morning Herald, 23 July 2015.]

“This concert also marked the local premiere of Australian composer Andrew Schultz’s Sound Lur and Serpent, a short fanfare for brass and percussion first performed on the orchestra’s Chinese tour last year. Maintaining a well-blended sound, the orchestra’s brass and percussion ensemble realized Schultz’s evocative, imposing miniature with resounding power and penetrating clarity.” [Murray Black, “Vasily Petrenko reveals Rachmaninov,” The Australian, 24 July 2015.]

“If Sydney Symphony Orchestra is Australia’s flagship orchestra, then composer Andrew Schultz can be seen as th0e spokesman for the country’s contemporary classical music. His music has been performed and recorded by leading musicians around the world. Beijing audiences are in for a treat to see the world premiere of his new work. Foreboding and enchanting, Andrew Schultz’s “Sound Lur and Serpent, Fanfare for Brass and Percussion, Opus 98″ sets the tone for the evening’s performance. Inspired by old brass instruments that resemble the horns of beasts and the shapes of serpents, the piece was commissioned by the Sydney Symphony Orchestra for their 2014 China tour, and its gives the Chinese audience a taste of New Australian Music.” [“Sydney Symphony sets sail for China,” China Central Television, 30 June 2014]

“This piece really blows the roof off of anything and will start the concert series with the real sense of the incredible dynamism and energy that is Australia.” [David Robertson, “2014 China tour program”, Sydney Symphony Orchestra YouTube Video.]

 

Nocturnes and Variations for piano (2014)

“…this was a performance [by Stephen Emmerson in Singapore] which did not so much shed light on the music as illuminate it warmly from within….That is certainly what Emmerson did with the haunting set of variations written for him by Andrew Schultz. With its echoes of Peter Sculthorpe, this captivating piece added to the growing sense that a distinct musical language is coming out of Australia which is as unique and starkly beautiful as the land itself.” [Marc Rochester, “A rare chamber treat,” The Straits Times, 20/2/16.]

 

August Offensive (2013)

“Wedged between these pieces was Andrew Schultz’s August Offensive. The work opened with a truly cataclysmic moment, then dropped back. Flashes of power were shot through with some lovely rich harmonies from the strings, as the piece slowly rebuilt to the devastating cacophony of its opening bar.” [Madeleine Dale, “Review: The Gallipoli Symphony,” Limelight, 28 November 2015.]

“Conductor Jessica Cottis, masterly yet sensitive, brought the Symphony to a shattering crescendo with Andrew Schultz’s dramatic movement “The August Offensive” conjuring up the most violent part of the fighting.” [Helen Musa, “Gallipoli Symphony premieres to standing ovation,” City News, 25 November 2015.]

 

I am writing in this book (2011)

“The concluding composition, Andrew Schultz’s I am writing in this book, composed specially for Halcyon in 2011, set five songs in English from the tenth-century text the Pillow Book…The selections chart Shonagon’s growth as a woman from the singular vision of ‘A gift of paper’ to the funereal ‘It is getting dark’, set as a ghostly duet between the voices and cello. Overlapping sibilances and intense vocal patter added character to the work’s central three movements, in which powerlessness, revulsion and wonder all played compelling parts.” [Luke Iredale, “Winter Moon Secrets,” ClassikOn, 4 September 2015.]

 

Deep blue and dirty (2011)

“The evocative title… Deep blue and dirty was commissioned by bassoonist Mark Gaydon, who was rewarded with an excellent vehicle for his virtuosic skills. He and pianist Lucinda Collins give a lively performance of a striking work. Two themes open the work, one might be ‘deep blue’ and the other ‘dirty’, the composer tells us. A set of nine variations follow without a break – four on the first theme, four on the second and the ninth combines the two. Open chords on piano and trills on the bassoon introduce long, lyrical melodic lines, then a jazzy central section which fades down to a soft ending. This is a major addition to solo bassoon repertoire… In summary, this is memorable music performed by expert musicians, well recorded and presented. [Gwen Bennett, “Deep blue and dirty,” Music Trust of Australia, 1 August 2015.]

“The composer gives few clues about this piece. Feel free to muse…Mark Gaydon’s bassoon is indeed very deep, but also very high; blue and bluesy or purple or many shades of grey, occasionally grandpa grubby, rather than dirty. Pianist Lucinda Collins keeps pace with him in his own commission, crafted by Schultz to reveal the technical and expressive facets of the wind family’s elder brother. This is material to ponder on. Let your imagination plunge deep, scan the sky.” [Elizabeth Silsbury, “Deep blue and dirty,” Music Trust of Australia, 1 August 2015.]

Deep Blue and Dirty showcases Mark Gaydon’s lyrical and full-bodied bassoon playing. The attractive timbral contrast in the bassoon is matched by an evocative piano accompaniment provided by Lucinda Collins. The rapport between the two musicians is highly effective, and probably the standout of the disc.” [Andrew Aronowicz, “Andrew Schultz, Deep blue and dirty,” Limelight, 2 October 2015.]

 

Indigo Invention (2010)

Indigo Invention is a duet, about six minutes long… progressing from gentle to lyrical with a more energetic section in the middle. It is the sort of delectable music that leaves a smile on one’s face.” [Gwen Bennett, “Deep blue and dirty,” Music Trust of Australia, 1 August 2015.]

“… the duet for violin and cello, Indigo Invention, has sweet melodies and an almost romantic lyricism at times.” [Andrew Aronowicz, “Andrew Schultz, Deep blue and dirty,” Limelight, 2 October 2015.]

 

To the evening star (2009):

“The longest piece on the CD is a song-cycle To the evening star, winner in 2009 of the prestigious Paul Lowin Award. It is performed expertly by Margaret Schindler and Stephen Emmerson for whom it was composed. Schultz has chosen poetry as a stimulus for five songs which ‘reflect on the creative inner life’. Providing contrast in musical expression for both singer and pianist, each one is a gem. The first song, “Lake Isle of Innisfree”, is a setting of words by Yeats which describe the psychological experience of seeking solitude and peace. It is beautiful and introspective, with some luminous writing for the voice. In contrasting mood, the next song “Pied beauty” is a joyful setting of Gerard Manley Hopkins’ delightful poem that begins: “Glory be to God for dappled things – For skies of couple-colour as a brindled cow”. “Mezzo Cammin” is dark and rather bleak in comparison, with spacious and sometimes thunderous writing for piano in Schultz’s interpretation of words by Longfellow: ‘The Cataract of death far thundering from the heights” – impressive. We breathe again in “Money, O!” where the poet W H Davies philosophises somewhat on the value of money…The piano accompaniments to the five verses are endlessly interesting and varied in this spirited piece. The final song in the cycle gives its name to the whole: “To the evening star”, words by William Blake. It is a deep, peaceful reflection on life, with some glorious curving melodies and great swoops of sound. In the whole cycle, including the choice of texts, Schultz successfully blends creativity and skill to produce a work of depth, sincerity and musicality.”  [Gwen Bennett, “Deep blue and dirty,” Music Trust of Australia, 1 August 2015.]

“Schultz has an eye and an ear for settable words. Schindler’s voice is light and flexible, her vibrato even throughout an impressive range. Singer and pianist deliver a variety of moody and scenic texts – Yeats yearning for “Lake Isle of Innisfree”, homespun philosophy in “Money, O!” by W.H.Davies, with the piano running rings around the voice. The title song, Blake’s image-packed “To the Evening Star”, invites repeated hearings, as much for the carefully crafted and performed piano part as for the voice.” [Elizabeth Silsbury, “Deep blue and dirty,” Music Trust of Australia, 1 August 2015]

 

Magnificat (2009):

“The Kühn Mixed Choir of Prague, conducted by Marek Vorlicek has done Schultz proud. His Magnificat begins with Mary musing in wonderment at this miracle that has befallen upon her. (No, I don’t believe it either. But let’s go along with it for the sake of the story.)

Schultz has entered the mind of the virgin, imagining her changing emotions, even a touch of trepidation, ending in a restrained shout of triumph that she of all women has been chosen for this mystical honour. His Magnificat is a beautiful piece, beautifully sung. It would sit well beside the Bach setting in live performance.” [ Elizabeth Silsbury “Foundations. Modern works in the classical tradition,” Music Trust of Australia, 1 February 2016.]

 

The Children’s Bach (2008)

Garner’s poetic and elusive book “translated very effectively into a lightly –scored and evocative chamber opera which took the central metaphor of the fugue from the novel. This became a meditation on the messiness and complexity of human relationships, one given a sense of structure by music.” [Michael Halliwell, “Fly Away Peter: when Australian literature goes to the opera,” The Conversation, 1 May 2015.]

 

After Nina (2007)

“After Nina, a trio for clarinet, cello and piano, was inspired by a Nina Simone version of a civil rights song of the 1930s called Strange Fruit…The sparse, soft opening chords of the piano are joined by a passionate cello melody, then clarinet. The emotional content is not angry, as one might expect from the scenario described in the devastating imagery of the text, but despair and sadness. Paul Dean (clarinet), Patrick Murphy (cello) and Stephen Emmerson (piano) combine well in an expressive and moving exposition of an intensely felt work.” [Gwen Bennett, “Deep blue and dirty,” Music Trust of Australia, 1 August 2015.]

“…After Nina, is a slowly unfolding reflection on a 1930s civil rights song (as performed by popular African-American singer Nina Simone) scored for clarinet, cello and piano. Its sombre chord progression with occasional dissonant harmonies makes for delicately emotional listening.” [Andrew Aronowicz, “Andrew Schultz, Deep blue and dirty,” Limelight, 2 October 2015.]

 

Lines drawn from silence (2007)

“In Lines drawn from silence Schultz sets fragments of writings by Sir Isaac Newton. Margaret Schindler’s radiant soprano is accompanied by Alan Smith (violin), Tania Frazer (oboe), Paul Dean (clarinet), Mark Gaydon (bassoon), Sharn McIver (French horn) and Kevin Power (piano). Inventive, expansive textures demonstrate the abilities of this first class ensemble, the Southern Cross Soloists.” [Gwen Bennett, “Deep blue and dirty,” Music Trust of Australia, 1 August 2015.]

“Reflecting on the spark of scientific discovery, Lines Drawn from Silence… features prominent parts for soprano and obbligato violin, set amongst an often-bustling texture of piano and winds.” [Andrew Aronowicz, “Andrew Schultz, Deep blue and dirty,” Limelight, 2 October 2015]

 

Once upon a time (2006)

Once upon a time has many interesting textures and layers to it, again an image laden piece…I quite like the way in which Schultz goes down to basics and proceeds from simple ideas, yet at the same time his music isn’t exactly lacking in richness, fine detail or complexity either. One thing I notice is his ability to pare things down so that you get a sense of the intimacy of chamber music, although these are works for large orchestra.” [Sid James, “Andrew Schultz,” Talk Classical, 27 September 2014.]

 

Master Mariner – Dead at Sea (2005) (viola and piano) and Master Mariner – Lost at Sea (2006) (oboe and piano)

Master Mariner – Lost at Sea is a short, atmospheric work for oboe and piano. Sombre, subdued chords from the piano of Kevin Power toll slowly at the start, joined by the oboe of Tania Frazer in a mournful lullaby. Schultz’s notes advise that this is a re-working of a song in his Dead Songs cycle where he took epitaphs from seaside cemeteries in New South Wales. A feeling of doom is accentuated by deep, rumbling sounds from low, muffled notes of the prepared piano. Despite its melancholy ambience, this piece is most enjoyable, possibly because we can listen from the safety of dry land whilst imagining an unfortunate mariner lost at sea. It is a fitting end to the CD program.” [Gwen Bennett, “Deep blue and dirty,” Music Trust of Australia, 1 August 2015.]

“Frazer and Power round off Schultz’s thoughtful and thought-provoking chamber gems with the short, pungent Lost at Sea. The bell tolls for us all. Schultz is a master of the High Intensity Short Time genre.” [Elizabeth Silsbury, “Deep blue and dirty,” Music Trust of Australia, 1 August 2015.]

“…an atmospheric piece suiting an imaginative performer.” [Robyn Brookfield, “Two New AMEB Viola Repertoire Books,” AUSTA, 11 May 2015.]

 

Sleepers wake (2003)

“it is good to see a piano version of the ‘Sleepers’ Wake’ as Andrew Schultz so powerfully imagined it in the cantata Journey to Horseshoe Bend.” [Gordon Kerry, “Bach piano transcriptions,” The Music Trust of Australia, 1 September 2015.]

 

Journey to Horseshoe Bend (2002)

Journey to Horseshoe Bend tells the story of a German missionary in early 20th century Australia, weaving it together with Australian Aboriginal and Christian narratives. The text is in English, German and the language of the Aranda people of central Australia. The story is of Carl Strehlow’s final journey and death in 1922. The landscape and weather patterns of the desert are conveyed in word and music.

Strehlow had made an extensive documentation of the Aranda people’s language, culture and music. The choir he founded (Ntaria Ladies Choir) sings in this performance, culminating in Bach’s chorale Wachet Auf (Sleepers Awake!) being woven in counterpoint with Strehlow’s translation of it into Aranda (Kaarerrai worlamparinyai). This is the emotional high point in the piece, which celebrates the life of Strehlow and the culture which he had embraced (at a time when it this was not the norm for white people, much less for religious ministers).

This was my first listen to this work, and as with orchestral works by Schultz I liked that balance between the epic and intimate. It also has parallels with Tippett’s A Child of our Time, in terms of combining different histories and traditions…

Another listen to Journey to Horseshoe Bend, this time I sensed more subtleties in the plot, in terms of the interweaving of Aboriginal spirituality, Biblical narraitves and stories of the pioneer life in the desert. The setting is the harshness and beauty of the Australian landscape, and there is also a sense of the layers of history, with Strehlow’s son narrating as both a boy and adult (so in present and past tense).

It’s quite interesting, and I can understand how initially this project was envisaged to be an opera and only became a cantata later. The story tells itself, but there are ambiguities here too. Dying in the desert, Strehlow feels that his God has abandoned him, and this could have ended on a dark note with him alone in the wilderness (like Schoenberg’s Moses und Aron, maybe). But it ends in a celebratory mood, rejoicing in the beauty of nature, humanity and music.” [Sid James, “Journey to Horseshoe Bend,” Talk Classical, 2 and 12 October 2014]

 

Violin Concerto (1996)

“… I’d call it radiant, it has this sense of nature and warmth. I noticed a couple of links between the two movements in terms of texture and melody. The first is a chorale that ends like a hymn and the second is a very energetic dance, which had shades of folk music (drones), jazz (the brassy bits), the chorale theme and percussive elements returning from the start of the concerto.” [Sid James, “Violin Concerto,” Talk Classical, 20 September 2014.]

November matters

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Upcoming November performances and CD/DVD releases of works by Andrew Schultz.

After Nina is presented by the Glasshouse Trio in Eudlo Hall, Eudlo, Queensland on Saturday 7 November at 7pm. The program also includes works by Brahms, Beethoven and Frankel. Glasshouse Trio (Louise King – cello, Paul Dean – clarinet  and Stephen Emmerson – piano) contains two of the players who commissioned After Nina in 2007 – it has since had many performances by other groups as well. More information and tickets to the concert.

Prelude and Postcript for piano has its European premiere given by Antony Gray in London on Friday 13 November at 8pm at Schott’s Music Shop, 48 Gt Marlborough Street, London W1 in a concert presented by the Grieg Society of Great Britain. More information and tickets to the concert.

Lake Moonrise for mezzo, clarinet, cello and vibes is released on Sunday 15 November on a Tall Poppies CD as a part of the Halcyon collection of works, Kingfisher (Songs for Halcyon). For more details.

Endling is presented on radio and on-line by BBC3 in a performance by the BBC Ulster Orchestra/David Porcelijn – listen live on Tuesday 17 November at 2pm (UK time) or listen on-line afterwards for 10 days – here is the link for more information.

August Offensive for orchestra is presented as a part of the Australian premiere of the Gallipoli Symphony by the Queensland Symphony Orchestra/Jessica Cottis at the Concert Hall, Queensland Performing Arts Centre on Tuesday 24 November 2015 at 7:30pmMore information and tickets to the concert. See a YouTube clip about the Gallipoli Symphony. Listen to the concert live on ABC Classic FM.

ABC Classics have just released the DVD of the August 2015 Istanbul performance of the Gallipoli Symphony (including August Offensive) given by the Istanbul State Symphony/Jessica Cottis. Catalog number is 076 2924. Here are the details

 

Kingfisher_Cover

 

 

More info on the works: www.andrewschultz.net

Nocturnes and Variations premieres in Brisbane

The first performance of Nocturnes and Variations for piano, opus 96 (2014) will be given by Stephen Emmerson in Brisbane in October. The work is a 15 minute, three movement piece commissioned by Stephen Emmerson and Griffith University. The two outer movements are nocturnes and the middle, larger movement is a set of variations. Stephen plays the work in a concert of piano music at the Ian Hanger Recital Hall, Queensland Conservatorium of Music, Griffith University, Grey Street, South Brisbane on Wednesday, 28 October at 6:00pm.

For more details and to book tickets: http://www.conevents.com.au/doppleganger/

 

 

Composer’s Note: Andrew Schultz – Nocturnes and Variations for piano, Opus 96 (2014)

“In unlit places without streetlamps or yelping neon, night is profound and often comes as ease. Relief from looking out for and away from.” [Toni Morrison, Love]

  1. Nocturne – Lento
  2. Variations – Sostenuto e misterioso
  3. Nocturne – Liquido (quasi senza misura)

This 15 minute work was completed in early 2014 and was commissioned by my friend, the wonderful pianist Stephen Emmerson, to whom the work is also dedicated. The two outer movements are nocturnes and the middle, larger movement is a set of variations. The two nocturnes are muted and atmospheric night pieces that unfold slowly but with more jubilant passages at their centre. The outer movements frame the larger central variations movement. In all there are 31 variations of four bars each, based on the harmonically ambiguous but simple four bar chordal theme that opens the movement. Each variation draws on the opening material of the theme but also takes up the material of the surrounding variations; hopefully, that achieves a kind of organic flow and dramatic shape in the overall set of variations.

 

PS. Read about Stephen Emmerson’s recent performance of the work in February 2016 in Singapore:

“…this was a performance which did not so much shed light on the music as illuminate it warmly from within….That is certainly what Emmerson did with the haunting set of variations written for him by Andrew Schultz. With its echoes of Peter Sculthorpe, this captivating piece added to the growing sense that a distinct musical language is coming out of Australia which is as unique and starkly beautiful as the land itself.” [Marc Rochester, “A rare chamber treat,” The Straits Times, 20/2/16.]

 

Halcyon

In September, three concerts by Sydney ensemble Halcyon present five works by Andrew Schultz.

 

WINTER MOON SECRETS

Friday 4th Sept 2015 at 7.30pm
Music Workshop, Sydney Conservatorium of Music

The program features the premiere of A Feast of Lanterns II (2015) by Larry Sitsky scored for mezzo, violin, cello, piano and percussion.

The program also features Andrew Schultz’s I am writing in this book (2011) written for soprano, mezzo, cello, double bass, harp, percussion and piano. Commissioned by Halcyon, and workshopped with Andrew during a Bundanon residency, it is a collection of five songs on texts drawn from 10th century writer Sei Shonagon’s The Pillow Book.

Sohmon III (1988), by eminent Japanese composer Minoru Miki, sets poetry from the oldest anthology of Japanese poetry, the Man’Yoshi (Collection of Ten Thousand Leaves) dating from the seventh and eight centuries in a work for soprano, piano and percussion.

Halcyon is pleased to welcome koto virtuoso Satsuki Odamura for this program.  She will be performing two solo works composed for her: Interlude from Koto Dreaming (2003) by Ross Edwards and Garden (2006) by Rosalind Page.

Tickets $35/$25 through Classikon

For more details click here

Image (at right, above): Moon with a View by Kay Stratman

 

DITTIES

Tuesday 15th September  6pm

Wyselaskie Auditorium, Melbourne Conservatorium of Music

Ken Murray (guitar) and Jenny Duck-Chong (mezzo soprano) present a recital of Australian songs written for voice and guitar over the past three decades. Featuring Matthew Hindson’s Insect Songs, John Peterson’s Of Quiet Places, Helen Gifford’s Spell Against Sorrow, several songs from Ditties by Andrew Schultz, and songs by Christine McCombe.

For more details click here

 

 

PARADISE

Thursday 17th September 1-2pm
Io Myers Studio, University of NSW,  Sydney

Halcyon presents a  lunchtime program for voice, cello and piano by Andrew Schultz and Rosalind Page.  Features To The Evening Star (2009) Prelude and Postscript  for piano (2015)* and Paradise (2013)* by Schultz and Being and Time III: Paradiso (2015) by Page.

Australian premiere

Admission: free

For more details of the date and venue click here

Download the concert program: Paradise_program

More details of the works by Andrew Schultz

Endling and Willow Bend with BBC Ulster Orchestra

The BBC Ulster Orchestra, conducted by David Porcelijn, present Willow Bend and Endling by Andrew Schultz in concerts in Ulster Hall, Belfast on  Wednesday 12 August and Friday 14 August. The concerts are a part of the BBC Radio 3 Summer Invitation Concerts with the theme of ‘Music of the Southern Hemisphere.’ The concerts also include music by Grainger, Sculthorpe, Glanville-Hicks and Kats-Chernin.  Other concerts in the series include music from New Zealand and Brazil. For all details of the concerts, broadcasts and the venue please follow this link:

http://www.bbc.co.uk/showsandtours/shows/r3_summer_invitation_2015

Excerpts of Endling and Willow Bend can be heard on this BBC website: http://www.bbc.co.uk/music/artists/4782cba7-8703-4258-881f-0a56dd6a2333

For information about Endling and Willow Bend:

http://www.andrewschultz.net

Watch a YouTube excerpt of Endling as used in the film, Flight:

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=9oHTeJBVNQ0

Schultz’s August Offensive in Istanbul and Brisbane

Gallipoli Symphony premiere

Commissioned by the Australian Department of Veterans’ Affairs and supported by the Turkish Ministry for Culture and Tourism as part of the 2015 Year of Friendship and during the 100th anniversary year of the Gallipoli Campaign, the World Premiere of Gallipoli Symphony was conducted at the historically-significant Hagia Irene Monumental Museum in Istanbul on Tuesday 4 August 2015. The work contains music by Australian, Turkish and New Zealand composers including Andrew Schultz’s orchestral work, August Offensive.

It was performed to an invitation-only audience by the Istanbul State Symphony Orchestra under the direction of United Kingdom-based Australian conductor, Jessica Cottis.  Specialist soloist musicians Michael Askill (percussion), William Barton (didgeridoo), Horomona Horo (Maori instruments), Julian Jackson (harmonica) and Omar Faruk Tekbilek (Turkish instruments) featured throughout the performance.  A combined choir including representatives from the St Joseph’s Gregory Terrace – All Hallow’s Gallipoli Choir (Australia) and the (Turkish) State Opera and Ballet provided vocal accompaniment in the first and final movements of the Symphony.

Gallipoli Symphony was also performed by the Queensland Symphony Orchestra/Cottis in Brisbane, at the Queensland Performing Arts Centre – Concert Hall, on Tuesday 24 November 2015 at 7:30pm. Details: http://qso.com.au/special-events/gallipoli-symphony

The ABC-TV  broadcast of the Istanbul performance was available on i-view until 20 August 2015: http://iview.abc.net.au/programs/gallipoli-symphony/FA1425H001S00

The ABC-TV production of the Istanbul performance is available on DVD: https://shop.abc.net.au/products/gallipoli-symphony-dvd

The ABC Classics recording of the Brisbane performance is available on CD: https://shop.abc.net.au/products/qld-symphony-gallipoli-symphony-cd and via iTunes: https://itunes.apple.com/au/album/gallipoli-symphony-viii.-august/id1096207171?i=1096207959

 

Useful links

Visit the Gallipoli Symphony website for full details of the events and music.

Read more about August Offensive and its premiere at Gallipoli in 2013: http://wp.me/p28SRX-5E

Hear an excerpt of August Offensive and read a brief interview about the piece and the Gallipoli Symphony project: http://newsroom.unsw.edu.au/news/social-affairs/musical-tributes-anzac-centenary

Get a recording of August Offensive from iTunes: https://itunes.apple.com/au/album/schultz-august-offensive-for/id836022448

Read Gordon Williams program note for August Offensive.

Schultz’s Sound Lur and Serpent at Sydney Opera House

Sound Lur and Serpent is a work for brass and percussion composed by Andrew Schultz in 2014 for the Sydney Symphony Orchestra’s tour of China in late June and early July 2014. The orchestra, conducted by Chief Conductor, David Robertson, presented performances in Shanghai, Jinan, Beijing, Xi’an, Hangzhou, Shenzhen, and Guangzhou with the new work by Schultz opening the concerts.

On 22, 23 and 24 July 2015, the Sydney Symphony Orchestra again present the work – this time under Vasily Petrenko, at the Sydney Opera House Concert Hall, in a program with Tchaikovsky and Rachmaninov. Click here for details of the concert, tickets and to read more about Sound Lur and Serpent.

ABC Classic FM will broadcast the concert on Saturday 25 July at 1pm (EAT). Click here for broadcast details or to listen online.

Read a lot more about the work and watch a performance from Beijing’s National Centre for Performing Arts by the SSO/Robertson by following this link to an earlier blog: http://wp.me/p28SRX-8A

Premiere of Le Molière Imaginaire for eight voices

Andrew Schultz – Le Molière Imaginaire for eight voices, Opus 99 (2015)

Text by Timothy Knapman, after the final scene of Molière’s Le Malade Imaginaire. Composed for brilliant English vocal group I Fagiolini, as part of Musica Viva Australia’s 2015 International Concert Season. Commissioned for Musica Viva Australia by Geoff Stearn. World premiere performances in late July and early August 2015 in Sydney, Melbourne, Canberra, Newcastle, Perth and Adelaide. Click here for details of when and where, and how to book a ticket.

 

Do you like the sight of blood

In a trickle, spurt or flood?

And would you like to disembowel,

Amputate and do such foul

Things that, in the aftermath,

Would get you labelled “psychopath”?

You could learn to be a doctor.

Causing pain’s their stock-in-trade!

[Prologue, Le Molière Imaginaire. Timothy Knapman – text, Andrew Schultz – music.]

Composer’s note:

Molière hated doctors and it seems the feeling was mutual. Molière’s play Le Malade Imaginaire (The Imaginary Invalid, 1673) was his last. He was seriously ill when writing it and died a few hours after a performance in which he had played the major role of Argan, the wealthy hypochondriac. Throughout the play, Molière heaps scathing wit on the money-raking quackery of his medical contemporaries. Some 25 years later, an English doctor visiting Paris considered Molière to have had ‘as much malice as wit.’

The last scene of the play is in fact a musical interlude – one of three in the play. It consists of a faux medical graduation ceremony in which a budding doctor is put through his paces by the medical fraternity and tested on his capacity to provide the right solutions to various hypothetical scenarios. In keeping with the spirit of farce the ceremony is enacted in bizarre pig-Latin – not quite Latin, French or Italian, but a mixture of all three signifying the pomposity of the occasion. The medical ceremonies of the time were apparently quite elaborate with music, costumes, processions and speeches in Latin.

Whilst living in Paris at the Cité des Arts in 2014, I became interested in the fact that neither of the two main English translations of the play attempted an English version of this last scene; both leave the final scene in its original form. Perhaps this was because of the bizarre dexterity of the language or the idea that it somehow would be known and understood because of the Latin. So, after much encouragement and support from I Fagiolini’s erudite artistic director, Robert Hollingworth, and the aid of some Latinistas and Molière enthusiasts a new and contemporary version of the scene has been created by the English writer, Tim Knapman and myself for unaccompanied voices.

Andrew Schultz.

Carl Vine’s review of the premiere: https://musicavivaaustralia.wordpress.com/2015/07/28/carl-vine-on-i-fagiolinis-newcastle-concert/

More information: http://www.musicaviva.com.au/whatson/international-concert-season-2015/musicians/IFagiolini

ABC Classic Fm will broadcast the concert by I Fagiolini, including Le Moliére Imaginaire, at 1pm on Thursday 20 August: http://www.abc.net.au/classic/music-listings/?date=2015-08-20