Wednesday, January 18, 2012

Sciarrino in Tokyo

I thought I'd put up a short post about the concert I went to last night. Every year the Composium hosts the Toru Takemitsu Composition Award Competition. Each year they invite a different composer to chair the awards committee. Last year it was Salvatore Sciarrino, someone Pacific composition students will remember from our recent Italian Festival.

In Tokyo, the concert of his works was delayed by the events in March last year so I had an opportunity to hear it last night at Tokyo Opera City, an extraordinary, relatively new concert hall. Here's a slightly  blurry iPhone pic (gomen nasai) -

You'll notice a large thundersheet on the left side of the stage. There is also one on the right side as the first piece was for a double orchestra. Later they brought out yet a third thundersheet for another piece. Gotta love those thundersheets!

The concert program included -

Berceuse for orchestra (1967)
Libro notturno della voci for flute and orchestra (2009)
Archeologia del Telefono - concertante for 13 instruments (2005)
Studi per I'intonazione del mare with voice, flute quartet, saxophone quartet, percussion, ensemble of 100 flutes, and ensemble of 100 saxophones (2000)

And yes - the last piece did indeed include sax and flute orchestras of 100 players each. Of the four pieces I preferred the Archeology of the Telephone but I'm not sure what it had to do with telephones...?

All in all a concert of very interesting and unique work... Great to hear - a rare opportunity.