Muzyka Klasyczna The best music site on the web there is where you can read about and listen to blues, jazz, classical music and much more. This is your ultimate music resource. Tons of albums can be found within. Fri, 01 Jul 2022 01:22:57 +0000 Joomla! 1.5 - Open Source Content Management pl-pl Giacinto Scelsi - Chamber Music for Strings (Duo, Soli, Trio À Cordes) [1989] Giacinto Scelsi - Chamber Music for Strings (Duo, Soli, Trio À Cordes) [1989]

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01 Elegia per Ty, for viola & cello (1958) - 1
02 Elegia per Ty, for viola & cello (1958) - 2 
03 Elegia per Ty, for viola & cello (1958) - 3
04 Divertimento for violin, No 3 (1955) - 1
05 Divertimento for violin, No 3 (1955) - 2
06 Divertimento for violin, No 3 (1955) - 3
07 Divertimento for violin, No 3 (1955) - 4
08 L'âme ailée for violin (1973)
09 L'âme ouverte for violin (1973)
10 Coelocanth, for viola (1955) - 1
11 Coelocanth, for viola (1955) - 2
12 Coelocanth, for viola (1955) - 3
13 Trio for strings (1958) - 1
14 Trio for strings (1958) - 2
15 Trio for strings (1958) - 3
16 Trio for strings (1958) – 4

Patrick Demenga – cello
Robert Zimansky – violin
Christoph Schiller – viola


The second half of the 20th Century is unthinkable without Giacinto Scelsi. A composer who was many years ahead of his time, Scelsi did not receive widespread recognition until the late 1980’s when the ISCM Festival in Cologne presented his works to endless acclaim, though he had been composing prolifically since the 1930s. Scelsi’s contribution to music of the 20th Century is comparable to that of Cage, Xenakis and Rudhyar, but his importance as a mystical visionary, or “messenger between two worlds” can only be compared to the likes of fellow modern Pythagoreans R. Buckminster Fuller, G. I. Gurdjieff, Timothy Leary, Nikola Tesla, William Burroughs, Wilhelm Reich, William Butler Yeats, and Arthur Machen.

Scelsi was an intensely private person whose life was shrouded in mystery. Although he apparently dictated an autobiography on tape, it is as of now unavailable. The few facts known about him are primarily from interviews with people that he worked with, and the threads of this scant data reveal a fascinating person of immense spiritual power and charm, a modern-day shaman who achieved illumination after years of yogic meditation and a consciousness altering near-death illness. Scelsi applied his “supramental” talents towards the task of transmediating a vast body of etheric knowledge from a higher plane into a “growling, sliding, writhing, meditative, formless, melodyless, harmonyless music” and was able to create something “unlike anything else in European history.” ---

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]]> (bluesever) Scelsi Giacinto Mon, 30 Dec 2013 17:01:13 +0000
Giacinto Scelsi - Trilogia, I Tre Stadi dell'Uomo (2006) Giacinto Scelsi - Trilogia, I Tre Stadi dell'Uomo (2006)

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01. Triphon[1956],I-Jeunesse    [0:06:12.00]
02. Triphon[1956],II-Energie    [0:03:53.00]
03. Triphon[1956],III-Drame    [0:05:12.00]
04. Dithome[1956-57]-Maturite-Energie-Pensee    [0:17:17.00]
05. Ygghur[1965],I-Viellesse    [0:08:15.00]
06. Ygghur[1965],II-Souvenirs    [0:04:21.00]
07. Ygghur[1965],III-Catharsis-Liberation    [0:06:00.00]

Arne Deforce – cello
[01,03] with special metallic sourdine


A truly singular figure in the realm of classical music, Giacinto Scelsi lived most of his creative life nearly completely invisible to the musical world. When his extraordinary oeuvre was properly discovered in the mid-eighties, he was already eighty years old; he died in 1988 mere months after a triumphant, well-received series of premieres of his large orchestral works, some of which had awaited performance for a quarter of a century.

Giacinto Scelsi was born in 1905 into an aristocratic family and was always wealthy enough to allow him to pursue his musical interests full-time. Besides being a virtuoso pianist, he also studied composition, getting acquainted with the ideas of Scriabin and the so-called second Viennese school. His compositional style was up-to-date and modernistic -- he was the first Italian to research and utilize the twelve-tone system, a decade before Luigi Dallapiccola -- until the mid-fourties, producing a large body of chamber pieces, in particular for solo piano.

A mental breakdown brought Scelsi's career came to a halt toward the late fourties. He sought refuge in poetry, Theosophy and oriental mysticism and meditation, traveling extensively in Nepal and India. By the time he resumed composing in 1952, his style had started to undergo a complete transformation, seemingly breaking entirely free of (but not abandoning) the western musical mold, and it was with the works of the 20 years that followed that he eventually gained his place amongst the greatest composers of the 20th century.

The music of Scelsi's mature period is characterized by an intense, meditative concentration on the sonorities of single notes, elaborated by microtonal shadings, timbral variation and ingenious polyphonic expansions; explicit rhythms are often absent, replaced by slowly evolving pulses reminiscent of the rhythm of breathing. A prime example is the Quattro pezzi su una nota sola ("four pieces on a single note") of 1959: one of Scelsi's few orchestral works to be performed soon after its composition (and one of the few to attract any manner of contemporary publicity), its four pieces each concentrate on just one note (F, B, Ab and A respectively) with an end result that is neither monotonic nor minimalistic, but iridescent, monolithic and intense.

Scelsi was most prolific in the realm of solo music, producing over his career amongst other things fourty preludes and eleven suites for piano and a vast amount of short pieces for wind instruments and strings. The many sketchlike pieces of the fifties served as preparations for the body of orchestral works that he would create in the sixties (of which the Quattro pezzi mentioned earlier was the first) and for which he is most famous, and for the string ensemble music which runs as an important vein throughout Scelsi's oeuvre. His five string quartets span the entire range of his stylistic stages of development, from the crisply modern 1944 first quartet to the startlingly austere fifth quartet of 1985 (one of his last works) and as a body contain some of his most intimate music; through the sixties he also wrote a series of works, partially drawing on the material of the quartets, for larger string ensembles.

Scelsi's orchestral phase, which yielded a total of seven works for large orchestra (with and without choir) and approximately as many for chamber-size ensembles, peaked in complexity with the violent Uaxuctum (for orchestra, choir, vocal soloists and ondes martenot, 1966); after the majestic Konx-Om-Pax (for orchestra and choir, 1969) he withdrew from large-scale projects - nearly nothing of them had been performed anyway.

In the seventies Scelsi started to gain some recognition amongst musicians and other composers. He was sought for collaborations and commissions by esteemed instrumentalists, such as Frances-Marie Uitti, Marianne Schröder and Joëlle Léandre. His compositions of this era tended to a kind of distilled austerity, and were for the most part written for one or two instruments. After 1976 he composed little new material, but his fame has been steadily if slowly growing.

Shortly after Scelsi's death in 1988 his output was surrounded by a rather unusual controversy arising from his peculiar composition method. In the early fifties Scelsi, dissatisfied with the insufficiency of his formerly favored piano's twelve notes to the octave to produce the sounds he wanted, began using the Ondioline, an electronic keyboard instrument capable of microtonal output. He would compose by improvising passages to magnetic tape and transcribe and orchestrate it afterwards, either in person or by his assistant under his guidance. One Vieri Tosatti, who had worked as Scelsi's assistant for the last ten years of his life, said in an interview that he had written Scelsi's music during those years. This allegation turned out be highly implausible: Scelsi had had numerous assistants over the years, yet his style hadn't changed accordingly; Tosatti's own music was characterized by Frances-Marie Uitti as "conservatively Wagnerian"; finally, Tosatti himself later refused to discuss his claim further at all. ---

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]]> (bluesever) Scelsi Giacinto Tue, 02 Jul 2013 16:06:38 +0000
Scelsi & Mantobani - Hommage a Scelsi (2008) Scelsi & Mantobani - Hommage a Scelsi (2008)

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Giacinto Scelsi
[1-3] Sonata for Violin and Piano (1934) [24:06]
[4-7] Divertimento No 4 (1955) [14:04]
[8-9] Duo (1965) [9:30]
[10-12] Xnoybis (1964) [12:09]

Bruno Mantobani
[13] D’une Seule Voix (2007) [10:54]

Diego Tosi (violin) 
Timothé Tosi (cello)
Jay Gottlieb (piano)


I had not previously heard much of Scelsi’s early music, and found the Violin Sonata to be surprisingly melodic, reminiscent in its angular phrases of the neo-classicism of Hindemith. The style is not far removed from other ‘big name’ composers of the era, with resonances of Berg and his contemporaries. There is a hint of romanticism; this is not academic music in the sense that it seems to have a clear emotional message intertwined with the strangely memorable lines. Quite a substantial work, it has character and a naïve charm.

The Divertimento No. 4 for solo violin was composed some twenty years later, and is altogether more contemporary in its style, despite retaining a sense of tonality. This is a challenging work, heard here in its first recording. There is an underlying sense of earthiness, and the frenzied faster sections seemed almost ritualistic in their spiralling motion. There is room, too, for expression, and the piece serves as an excellent show-piece for the violin. The four movements each take on their own characters, extending the previous sound-world in a different direction. The playing is assured and exuberant, with poetic expression juxtaposed with displays of technical brilliance.

Duo, composed in 1965, is scored for violin and cello. This is much more similar in style to those of Scelsi’s works I had previously encountered, making use of clusters, dense textures and unusual sounds to create an individual sound-scape. The music is essentially textural, rather than melodic, with multiple-stopped notes - the score is notated, according to the programme notes, with usually three staves per instrument - performed with altered tone qualities. Trills and tremolos give a sense of movement to the work, which, although primarily static, has a sense of constant evolution. With two movements of similar length, this is highly atmospheric, with tensions building between the instruments and dissonances increasing through microtonal pitch bends.

The remaining work by Scelsi on this disc is Xnoybis, a microtonal work in three movements for solo violin. Making use of minimal material, Scelsi creates a slowly evolving musical line which seems like a concentration of the style of his earlier works. The contrast with the Divertimento is enormous, in terms of melodic structure and musical language, and yet the juxtaposition of emotion and technique is retained. This is difficult music to perform; treated purely on the technical level, the music becomes quickly boring – the emotional level is essential to retain interest and atmosphere. Diego Tosi does an excellent job here. The performance is gripping, captivating even, and one is intrigued to find out where the music will go next. Scelsi’s use of dissonance is scintillating, with micro intervals emerging from the texture and then sliding slowly to become unisons. For me, this was the most fascinating work of the disc, demonstrating Scelsi’s unique voice as a composer.

Bruno Mantovani describes his duo for violin and cello as a ‘Solo for two instruments’. This is a highly challenging work for the performers, which is brilliantly executed here. Composed specifically to be included in a concert programme of Scelsi’s works, Mantovani takes elements of Scelsi’s style and combines them with his own, creating an exciting musical language. Mantovani is an exciting young composer who already has an impressive CV. His music is certainly worthy of further exploration. ---Carla Rees ,

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]]> (bluesever) Scelsi Giacinto Wed, 03 Jul 2013 15:17:02 +0000