CHORAL WORKS BY
GYÖRGY LIGETI AND ZOLTÁN KODÁLY
For most of the 20th century, the two giants of Hungarian music were Bartók and Kodály. Following his explosion on the international scene in the mid-60s, György Ligeti, a student of Kodály, was added to that list. Kodály was one of the most significant early figures in the field of ethnomusicology. He also composed prolifically for choirs. All of the Kodály works on this program were influenced by folk music and chart the composer’s development from the world of late romanticism to the mini-cantata Mátrai képek (Mátra pictures), including a shimmering performance of Esti Dal (Evening Song), his most beloved choral work.
Most of music that Ligeti composed for a cappella choir was written in the mid-50s while still in Budapest. Alongside numerous folk song arrangements, like Mátraszentimrei Dalok, were pieces like Éjszaka - Reggel (Night – Morning) which were already pushing the sonic boundaries with clusters and onomatopoeic sounds. Ligeti’s mature style can be heard in the shimmering and justifiably famous Lux Aeterna while the late Drei Phantasien (on texts by Friedrich Hölderlin) described by Ligeti himself as “emotional, «onomatopoeic», overwrought, 16-voiced pieces (not micropolyphonic!)” is an example of his late Post-Modernist style.
For this very special and demanding repertoire, both teacher and student are in good hands with the Danish National Vocal Ensemble and conductor Marcus Creed. Audiophiles will also be richly rewarded with the vivid imaging and “as real as it gets” sonic presence thanks to producer Michael Emery and technician Mikkel Nymand. A Dolby Atmos release is being planned.
Promotion video, YouTube: https://youtu.be/Hhnqlo8YTxk