Paharión, the Red Angel in the Garden of las Huelgas

15 Dialogues between West and East

op. 62, 2015

For Schola Antiqua, Byzantine style psalm singer, violin, lyre, ney, clarinet/bass clarinet
Duration: 65 min.

Commissioned by the Patrimonio Nacional España
World premiere: 10 October 2015, monastery of Las Huelgas, Burgos, Spain. Choir: Schola Antiqua Spain, soloists of opus21musikplus: voice and lyre: Vassilis Agrokostas, violin: Miltiades Papastamou, clarinet/bass clarinet: Slava Cernavca, ney: Harris Lambrakis, conductors: Juan Carlos Asensio, Konstantia Gourzi

Composer’s notes

Paharión is the second piece in a composition series for varying ensembles dedicated to angels. These angels, created by painters and sculptors who are close friends, inspired me to embark on this series, to give the angels sounds and portray them as musically alive. Each of the sound angels will receive a name that does not yet stand for anything already in existence.

The sculpture that inspired the sound-angel Paharión is an artwork by Alexander Polzin. The music is not attempting to interpret the sculpture. Instead the music stands very near to the “sounds” of the artwork and forms a new connection with it.

Paharión is the combination of sounds from different traditions, played on modern and traditional instruments. The piece combines fifteen sound dialogues between different cultures: Gregorian and Byzantine voice meet Western instruments like violin and clarinet as well as traditional ones from Eastern countries like the lyre and ney. The friction between the different tunings inspired me especially.

The instrumentalists, Schola Antiqua and Byzantine style psalm singer perform in their characteristic modes, connected with short texts. They are Old Greek and Latin texts taken from the scripts of Las Huelgas. Thus, Paharión creates a new musical connection and experience.

Press reviews

“Die insgesamt vier Instrumentalisten bewegen sich mühelos zwischen historischen Klängen und zeitgenössischen Elementen, die vor allem Slava Cernavca mit seiner zum Teil regelrecht swingenden Bassklarinette beisteuert. Ebenso flexibel gestaltet der Saint Ephraim Male Choir, ein ungarischer Männer-Kammerchor, seine Gesänge zwischen Orthodoxie und spanischer Vokalpolyphonie. (…) Entscheidend bei diesem Projekt ist wohl die Utopie, dass unterschiedliche religiöse und damit auch musikalische Traditionen geeignet sind, Brücken zwischen den Menschen zu bauen. Wollen wir es hoffen. Im Germanischen Nationalmuseum jedenfalls fand diese Utopie zu einem schönen Klang.”

Nürnberger Zeitung, 14 June 2018

Score

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2018-08-22T11:12:20+00:00