Ostrava, May 7, 2019 – Over the course of its 10-day programme (22 - 31/08), the Festival Ostrava Days is planning two extraordinary orchestral concerts. The former industrial buildingsbelonging to the complexes of Žofín Steelworks and KarolinaCoking Plant located half-way between the historical centreof the city and the industrial agglomeration Vítkovice, will be transformed intoa concert hall as well as a theatrestage. The grand orchestral opening of the festival with both world and Czech premieres of new compositions in the Triple Hall Karolina will take place on Sunday, August 25 and the festival will be brought to an end with an avant-garde opera performance on Saturday, August 31. The opening concert, which will surely abound in extraordinary feats, will be performed by the international orchestra of young musicians Ostrava New Orchestra (ONO) and the closing concert will be handled by Prague Radio Symphony Orchestra.
Although the first Festival event will be launched already on Thursday 22nd August at the Hlubina Mine and the following Friday and Saturday marathons will offer 20 hours of contemporary music, the grand orchestral opening of the Festival will take place on Sunday as usual. The programme of the opening is bursting in seams with compositions performed by approximately 85 musicians and with solo virtuoso performances too. The foreign contemporary music scene will be represented by Austrian composer, programmer, star of the western opera scene and a loop magician Bernhard Lang (*1957), who, while staying faithful to the roots of European avant-garde looks for inspiration in free jazz, rock, punk and techno, and by Israeli composer living in the USA and a professor of the prestigious Harvard University Chaya Czernowin (*1957). Her compositions are often described as having a “distinctive physical” effect, which French violoncello player Séverine Ballon will attest to. Lang’s musical language will be interpreted by British clarinetist Gareth Davis who will perform an energetic composition for bass clarinet „DW28 Loops for Davis“ on two stages at the same time. Both of these compositions were written in 2017 and they will be performed in the Czech Republic for the first time in history. The world premieres of this evening will be entrusted to scientist, researcher and nanochemist Petr Cígler (*1978) and the teacher at the Music and Dance Faculty of the Academy of Performing Arts in Prague, sound performer and author of film music (i.e. Jan Palach) Michal Rataj. Both of these authors composed new pieces specially for the Ostrava Days Festival. Petr Cígler dedicatedhis Concerto for French Horn and Orchestra to the French horn player of Czech Philharmonic and conductor Ondřej Vrabec, and the solo part in Rataj’s composition MOVIS will be performed by Belgian pianist Daan Vandewalle. A work of the master of microtonal music, Canadian-German composer Marc Sabat (*1965) will also be heard. The programme will be complemented by the music of one of the youngest and also the most interesting residents of the Ostrava Days Institute 2019: English composer James Layton (*1996). Ostrava New Orchestra ONO will be conducted by Johannes Kalitzke, Bruno Ferrandis and Petr Kotík.
The closing night of the Festival will offer the world premiere of a composition (*1980) There Is An Island Above The City written by one of the most original of Czech composers, Petr Bakla. It will be presented by Prague Radio Symphony Orchestra (PRSO) under the direction of one of the most respected composers of contemporary music, Peter Rundel. The Festival will reach its climax with the only opera in its programme this year called Neither,the work of composer Morton Feldman (1926-1987) representing American experimental music scene. The libretto was written by playwright, novelist and opera hater Samuel Beckett (He sent it to Feldman written on a postcard). The 16-line poem represents the only textual material of the opera which is written for solo soprano and a great orchestra. The exacting solo part will be tackled by the diva of German opera scenes, soprano Claudia Barainsky, famous for her amazing recordings of the music of 20th and 21st century. The roofed square of the Triple Hall Karolina will be converted into an opera stage by a duo of directors and stage designers Jan Horák and Michal Pěchouček from the notable Prague theatre Studio Hrdinů. The entire event will be recorded by the general media partner of the festival, Czech Radio station Vltava.
Programme of the opening concert:
Sunday August 25, 2019, Triple Hall Karolina, 7:00 pm
Chaya Czernowin: Guardian (2017)
Petr Cígler: Horn Concerto, 1st movement (2019)
Bernhard Lang: “DW28 Loops for Davis” (2017)
Michal Rataj: MOVIS (2019)
Marc Sabat: The Luminiferous Aether (2018)
James Layton*: Focal (2019)
*resident of the Ostrava Days 2019 Institute
Programme of the closing concert:
Saturday August 31, 2019, Triple Hall Karolina, 7:00 pm
Petr Bakla: There Is An Island Above The City (2018)
Morton Feldman: Neither (1977)
Full programme of OD 2019 can be found here.
Ticket presale was launched on May 1. Until June 30, theprice of the Festival Pass for all concerts is 750 CZK. From July 1, its price will increase to 850 CZK. Students, seniors and handicapped persons are eligible for a discount of 150 CZK from the price of the Festival Pass. The prices of tickets for individual concerts are listed on out website. The tickets can be purchased through the GoOut network as well.
The Ostrava Days Festival is organized with the support of the Statutory City of Ostrava, The Ministry of Culture of the Czech Republic, The Moravian-Silesian Region and The Czech-German Future Fund and thanks to other institutions, foundations and the support from the private sector. We thank Libor Winkler for his continuous generous support of the Ostrava Center for New Music.
The Ostrava Days Festival is organized in cooperation with Triple Hall Karolina, National Moravian-Silesian Theatre, Janáček Conservatory in Ostrava, Provoz Hlubina and Bludný kámen Association.
The Festival is organized by the Ostrava Center for New Music. Information about the festival as well as other projects of the Center are available on the website www.newmusicostrava.cz and also on Facebook.
Additional information and print materials:
Ostrava Center for New Music
tel.: +420 777 613 184