7 February 2008

Xenakis - Architect in Sound

I'm hoping that people coming to this blog who are interested in free music may also be interested in Xenakis - a freedom fighter exiled from his homeland, his musical language is unique; at once raw, austere and ashen, and at the same time complex, lyrical and honeyed. He found a similar inspiration and awakening in Paris as African-American musicians did almost 15 years later

A weekend festival, 'Xenakis, Architect of Sound' was held in October 2005 in London, and all of the concerts, bar one, were subsequently broadcast by Radio 3 in four programmes, details of which (and links) are available in the comments.

The programme included a wide range of Xenakis' compositions, ranging from piano (Hermas and Evryali), to the amazing pieces for string quartet (Tetras and Tetora), piano quintet (Akea), trios and duos (Ikhoor and Dikhthas), to orchestral pieces such as Shaar, and Eonta, an extraordinary piece for brass and piano. There are also pieces by Varese, Stravinsky, Morton Feldman and Messiaen. Some of the performances are very good - especially the Arditti Quartet, and Nicolas Hodges in Eonta. The broadcasts didn't follow the order of the concerts, but have some interesting commentary so I've left them as is. Here also are some links to reviews of the concerts;



Tantris said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
Tantris said...

Xenakis: Architect In Sound (1of 4)


Iannis Xenakis - 'Evryali' (8'33") - Rolf Hind (piano) 

Iannis Xenakis - 'ST/10' (11'14") - London Sinfonietta conducted by Diego Masson

Iannis Xenakis - 'Waarg' (16'15") - London Sinfonietta conducted by Diego Masson

Iannis Xenakis - 'Mists' (11'56) - Rolf Hind (piano) 

Iannis Xenakis - Jalons (15'32") - London Sinfonietta conducted by Diego Masson

Iannis Xenakis - 'Eonta' (18'24") -London Sinfonietta conducted by Diego Masson

Olivier Messiaen - 'Cantéyodjayã' (12'00") - Rolf Hind (piano)

Xenakis: Architect In Sound (2 of 4)


Iannis Xenakis - 'Tetras' (15'20") - Arditti Quartet

Iannis Xenakis - 'À l'île de Gorée' (17'14") - London Sinfonietta conducted by Diego Masson with Elisabeth Chojnacka (harpsichord)

Iannis Xenakis - Akea (12'22") - Arditti Quartet and Nicolas Hodges (piano)

Iannis Xenakis - 'ST/4' (11'31") - Arditti Quartet

Iannis Xenakis - 'Ikhoor' (9'54") - Irvine Arditti (violin), Ralf Ehlers (viola) and Rohan de Saram (cello)

Iannis Xenakis - 'Akanthos' (10'10") - London Sinfonietta conducted by Diego Masson with Claire Booth (soprano)

Iannis Xenakis - 'Tetora' (16'07") - Arditti Quartet

Xenakis: Architect In Sound (3 of 4)


Iannis Xenakis - 'Dikhthas' (12'29") - Irvine Arditti (violin), Nicolas Hodges (piano)

Morton Feldman - 'Palais de mari' (27'27") - Rolf Hind (piano)

Xenakis: Architect In Sound (4 of 4)


Iannis Xenakis - Sea Nymphs

Varese - Integrales

Iannis Xenakis - Nuits

Iannis Xenakis - Shaar

Iannis Xenakis - Alax

Igor Stravinsky - Canticum Sacrum

BBC Singers

John Bowley (tenor)

Stuart MacIntyre (baritone)

Stephen Betteridge (Conductor)

BBC Symphony Orchestra

Jac van Steen (Conductor)

folly for to see what said...

Thanks Tantris
Yes I'm interested in Xenakis in fact I've got several records. Is really good that you include this music here. I love improvised music but I need Xenakis, Schnittke, Gubaidulina, Feldman, Berg, Schubert, Beethoven, Bach, Biber, Buxtehude, Diego Ortiz, Antonio de Cabezón…

Thanks Inconstant Sol people for include my new blog on your links.

Anonymous said...

Hats off to Tantris. This is some Music - capital M. I need a few days off work to deal with all of this.

sotise said...

yes thank you t.
i have never heard half of these pieces and im , rather looking forward to it.
big thanks for the mp3 conversion of frank wright live in new york.

King Kennytone said...

|¬`\\` \` ¬¬¬¬

I will say how marvellous it is, your WEBLOG & the continuation of this fine tradition of making the unheard AUDIBLE again
& the lost SOUND, like, er... found ~ so ter speak.

I am frequently snoopin' around here silently, and really ougtta just say thanks you cats for all the hip tunes, blah blah


Xenakis, yes!
I'm gona dig this shit over the weekend, have a goddam stochastic hootenanny, sho' nuff.

Carry on, chaps

King Kennytone

dalemcbdnl said...

Thanks Tantris! This is Astonishing! I'm a free rs user so this is going to take a while. BUT what a boon -I love Xenakis' works.

Unlike glmlr, however, I won't need time off from work. I'm retired -- HeHe. Being old has a few benefits.

Anonymous said...


Not so fast! I reckon I'm going to be retired within the next six months!!

Wally said...

Hi Tantris,
Im a bit of a latecomer to your site, but very appreciative of all the music posted here.
Certainly I'm a fan of Xenakis along with many other contemporary composers and there were several pieces here that I hadn't heard previously.
I'm not retired just yet, but I can get to listen at work. :)
However, some trecks (Akea, Waarg & Shaar)came down as 1kb files and others were truncated (Alax & Eonta). :(
Is that a problem with my download? Since nobody else has commented I guess it must be.
Cheers, Wally.

laslaw said...

Hm. No one heard this? On Program 4, the end of Alax is truncated. The piece does not end at 18:18 in the middle of the passage... On the BBC site, stranger still, Alax is not listed. Only Nuits and Shaar are.

Any clue as to what might have happened with the rest of the music?

laslaw01 said...

Hi Wally -

I think the problems for all tracks other than Alax are with your download. My files are fine on those. Eonta 'seems' to be all there. There is a false ending where the audience begins to clap (you wonder why they don't take their cues from the musicians... but the piece continues to an indefinite ending. Still, it doesn't end midnote, as does Alax. Cheers...

Anonymous said...

Hi Tantris,

Thanks very much for this post. I've been a bit of a Xenakis fan for years, but these BBC broadcasts showed me sides of him I never knew existed. Wonderful stuff!

Just one thing - I've only been able to download parts 1,2 and 4. Part 3 keeps giving an error on Rapidshare. Any chance you could upload it again? I'm really curious to hear it. Many thanks in advance and keep up the good work!

Brian, Corsica
dvdl25 AT yahoo.com