Category Archives: Interview

Russian composer Roman Stolyar writes B-ut-c-h-a: ‘I can’t remain silent on the war against Ukraine’

Shocked on learning how Russian soldiers had ruthlessly killed innocent civilians in the Ukrainian city of Bucha in March 2022, Roman Stolyar composed B-ut-c-h-a for piano and strings. Though he offered the score as a free download, the piece has … Continue reading

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Elena Firsova composes Piano Concerto for Concertgebouw Orchestra: ‘A new work of art brings new life’

On 16 and 17 June, the Royal Concertgebouw Orchestra will present the world premiere of Elena Firsova’s Concert for Piano and Orchestra. She was inspired by a quotation from Boris Pasternak and a motif from Beethoven. I interviewed her for … Continue reading

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Composer Indra Riše: ‘I get bored if music doesn’t come from the soul’

Whereas the Dutch government seems to regard culture as a superfluous luxury, other countries cherish its intrinsic value. The Latvian Music Information Centre regularly presents new CDs by composers from Latvia. In 2021 it released Trumpets of Angels with six … Continue reading

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Jennifer Walshe composes Mars I: ‘My robots follow the trajectory of the Perseverance Rover’

In collaboration with AMMODO, Muziekgebouw aan ‘t IJ regularly presents brand new compositions intended to reach a general audience. In the afternoon, a piece is worked on extensively in a public rehearsal; in the evening, the world premiere is performed. … Continue reading

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Composer Beat Furrer: ‘We have become detached from nature’

On Friday 6 May 2022 Beat Furrer makes his debut with the Royal Concertgebouw Orchestra with his brand new Sechs Gesänge. He used texts from Sara Gallardo’s novel Eisejuaz about the fate of the indigenous inhabitants of the Amazon: ‘Eisejuaz … Continue reading

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Wim Henderickx explores the pitfalls of intercultural relationships in The Convert: ‘My opera is highly topical’

On 10 May, the Opera Ballet Flanders presents the world premiere of The Convert by Wim Henderickx. The libretto was written by Krystian Lada and is based on the book of the same name by Stefan Hertmans. At the time … Continue reading

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Composer of the Year 2022 Missy Mazzoli: ‘Being a woman in a male-dominated world is one of my big themes’

The New York Times called her ‘one of the most inventive, surprising composers’, Time Out New York dubbed Missy Mazzoli the ‘Mozart of the new millennium’. The magazine Musical America proclaimed her Composer of the Year 2022. In September her … Continue reading

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Manfred Trojahn on his opera Eurydice – Die Liebenden, blind: ‘Eurydice is a vague person’

In 2011, Dutch National Opera presented the world premiere of Orest, directed by Katie Mitchell. Eleven years later, the Opera Forward Festival stages Eurydice – Die Liebenden, blind, for which Manfred Trojahn also wrote the libretto himself. The premiere is … Continue reading

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Huba de Graaff honours Persian poet Forough Farrokhzad: ‘Long live rebels!

Huba de Graaff (Amsterdam, 1959) is one of the most original composers in the Netherlands. In her idiosyncratic music theatre shows, she brings speakers to life (Lautsprecher Arnolt, 2003), explores the common ground between Flemish polyphony and monkey song (Apera, … Continue reading

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Soprano Elise Caluwaerts: ‘The songs of Alma Mahler are grand, intense and compelling’

Elise Caluwaerts not only smoothly sings the most acrobatic coloraturas, but also impresses in pieces of which the ink is still wet. Together with Marianna Shirinyan she has recorded all of Alma Mahler‘s songs for CD – on Alma’s own … Continue reading

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