Ostrava, October 5, 2021 – Ostrava Center for New Music returns to DOX+, the music hall of the Dox Center for Contemporary Art, with another iteration of the ESSENTIAL concert series. This year’s Essential Changes concert will follow up on orchestral programs with the music of Morton Feldman and Iannis Xenakis and will feature the works of Bernhard Lang. His orchestral compositions rendered by amazing soloists will be heard on Tuesday November 16 at 7pm. Lang’s universe of sound loops and repetitions, referring not only to the music of diverse periods and genres, but also to purely contemporary technological processes, will materialise in three compositions from the last five years. PKF – Prague Philharmonia with the international Ostravská banda orchestra, conducted by Johannes Kalitzke and Petr Kotík, will take up the challenging task of bringing these extremely difficult compositions to life. Bass clarinetist Gareth Davis and pianist Miroslav Beinhauer will perform the solo parts. The ticket presale to the unique Prague concert starts on October 5.
The work of Bernhard Lang (1957, Linz) is a shining example of modern contemporary art; the roots of his music thinking are truly abundant: his inspiration sources include not only European classical music or avant-garde of the 20th century, but also jazz, free jazz, rock, punk, techno, EDM, electronic and computer music. Moreover, he employs various philosophical concepts in his work, be it the theory of difference/repetition of Gilles Deleuze or Leibniz’s concept of monadology. These worlds of ideas often materialize in Lang’s music in the form of returning sound loops. Instead of creating a mediative atmosphere in the spirit of minimalism, they reappear irregularly, in sharp cuts and unexpected mood twists. For maximum effect, Lang makes use of contemporary technologies and the aesthetic of sampling, to which he resorts in the spirit of his motto: „If everything has already been said, repeat it!“
Besides studying music (composition, jazz, classical piano), Lang also studied philosophy and German philology. His work is far from unknown to the Czech audience – he is considered very much as an insider in the Ostrava music circle. His compositions have regularly appeared at the Ostrava Days festival since 2009 and in 2014 the NODO / New Opera Days Ostrava festival presented his opera Re:igen, which aroused great controversy with its overt treatment of sexuality. Bernhard Lang also returns to Ostrava as a sought-after tutor at the Institute of Ostrava Days. His orchestral composition Loops for Leoš, whose third movement is now in the process of being completed for its Prague concert, testifies to his close ties with the region of Leoš Janáček. Bernhard Lang belongs to the most sought-after European composers (in 2021, the premiere of his opera Playing Trump was performed at the Hamburg State Opera and another of his operas Der Hetzer premiered at Theater Dortmund).
At the DOX+ music hall, we will also be given the opportunity to hear two concerts: the first for bass clarinet and the latter for piano. Both of them put extreme interpretational and physical demands on the soloists. A no less important role is also played by the orchestra, creating a sonically dense and rhythmically breathtaking structure with which the solo instruments closely collaborate. Similarly as in Loops for Leoš, the two compositions refer to important music personalities of the past. In Loops for Davis, the main source of inspiration is American jazz trumpetist and composer Miles Davis. In Loops for Ludwig, it is Ludwig van Beethoven.
Tuesday 16 November 2021
19:00 Center of Contemporary Art DOX, multifunctional hall DOX+ (Poupětova 3, 170 00 Prague – Holešovice)
Gareth Davis, bass clarinet (London / Amsterdam)
Miroslav Beinhauer, piano (Opava)
PKF – Prague Philharmonia & Ostravská banda
Johannes Kalitzke, conductor (Cologne)
Petr Kotík, conductor (New York / Ostrava)
DW 28 “Loops for Davis” (2016) for bass clarinet and orchestra
Monadology XXXIV “Loops for Ludvik” (2017) for piano and orchestra
Monadology XXXVII “Loops for Leoš” (2017, rev. 2020) for orchestra
Total duration of the concert approx. 120 minutes
More information at www.newmusicostrava.cz and on Facebook www.facebook.com/ocnhOva/.
Ticket price: 500 CZK / 300 CZK (students, seniors). Tickets can be bought here.
The concert is produced by Ostrava Center for New Music in collaboration with the Center for Contemporary Art Dox.
We thank the Ministry of Culture of the Czech Republic, the Prague City Hall, the Statutory City Ostrava, the Moravian-Silesian Region, the State Culture Fund, the Austrian Cultural Forum and Veronika and Libor Winkler and Martin Vohánka for their financial support.