All new for two pianos
The GrauSchumacher Piano Duo will present three new works at Witten this year. As well as Vykintas Baltakas’Sandwriting for two pianos and live-electronics, they will also give the premiere of Johannes Maria Staud’sIm Lichte II for two pianos on 28 April. Their third performance at this year’s Wittener Tage für Neue Kammermusik will feature the German premiere of Elena Mendoza’s Salón de espejos for two pianos, two percussionists and orchestra.
Vykintas Baltakas’ work is in a sense a kind of trio; “the computer takes on the role of a third player,” explains the composer. “There are roughly twenty short episodes that are repeated two to four times. The order and length of the episodes are not synchronized between the pianists. However, the musicians still jointly create the overall sound. The computer listens and also makes musical decisions, adding particular algorithms, filtering and changing tone pitches, lengths and textures according to its interpretation. The computer also decides which model will follow next. In this way, there is a continuous morphing process, a constant transformation of sonic objects.”
Johannes Maria Staud’s new composition is based on his 2007 work Im Lichte for two pianos and orchestra, whose title recalls a passage in Nietzsche’s Ecce homo. The composition explains: “Im Lichte II. Musik für zwei Klaviere critically review the ten-year old piece and gives it a thorough reworking. I found the process of analysing myself as a composer, and to see what I have gained and lost since then, was a hugely exciting challenge. What came out of it was, I think, a work that can be judged on its own terms and doesn’t need to be compared with the original piece.”