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Chamber Concerto

Chamber Concerto

Marijn Simons

Label: Donemus
Format: Download Album
Barcode: 8718274610345
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Catalog number: CVCD 225
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In traditional chamber music performers strive to achieve an interpretive whole through a process of cross- fertilization. Although the musicians may be mutually inspired, there is an inevitable loss of expressive individuality through interpretive compromise. In more recent chamber works – one thinks, for example, of Ligeti or Xenakis – the high degree of rhythmic and metric complexity makes just “staying together” a central challenge (particularly when there is a lack of rehearsal time), resulting in performances that lack interpretive depth.

My Chamber Concerto (2017) addresses both issues with a different approach to chamber music. The work has no full score because every musician plays his or her part in an independent tempo without any synchronization. There is no need for interpretive compromise because in each part only the dynamics and an approximate indication of the tempo are given, leaving each musician free to interpret the part according to his or her individual creativity. And because each part is in a different and independent tempo there is no pressure to focus on rhythmic simultaneity. The result is a Chamber Concerto for four soloists, each playing his or her part with a maximum of individual expression, intensity and stage presence.

Marijn Simons

Chamber Concerto

Composed by Marijn Simons.
Performed by Liza Ferschtman (violin), Ole Christian Haagenrud (piano), Nabila Chajai (harp) and Colin Currie (percussion).

In traditional chamber music performers strive to achieve an interpretive whole through a process of cross- fertilization. Although the musicians may be mutually inspired, there is an inevitable loss of expressive individuality through interpretive compromise. In more recent chamber works – one thinks, for example, of Ligeti or Xenakis – the high degree of rhythmic and metric complexity makes just “staying together” a central challenge (particularly when there is a lack of rehearsal time), resulting in performances that lack interpretive depth.

My Chamber Concerto (2017) addresses both issues with a different approach to chamber music. The work has no full score because every musician plays his or her part in an independent tempo without any synchronization. There is no need for interpretive compromise because in each part only the dynamics and an approximate indication of the tempo are given, leaving each musician free to interpret the part according to his or her individual creativity. And because each part is in a different and independent tempo there is no pressure to focus on rhythmic simultaneity. The result is a Chamber Concerto for four soloists, each playing his or her part with a maximum of individual expression, intensity and stage presence.

The unity of the composition is achieved by shared musical cells that appear in one part and are later varied in another. The cross-fertilization between the musicians here involves the interaction of this shared musical material. The constant interplay of ideas, gestures, and interpretive approaches produces, as with a kaleidoscope, ever-shifting dimensions and perspectives. As a result, each performance of the Chamber Concerto is a unique event and any recording of the piece can only be made without edits, as in the present recording of the world première at the Delft Chamber Music Festival.

Air Sculptures III

Composed and produced by Marijn Simons. Mastered by Kees van de Wiel.

There is also no full score for Air Sculptures III (2010-2014), but in this case, it is a composition which exists only as a recording. Moreover, it would be virtually impossible to perform this “e-composition” live in a concert hall because it is conceived for the medium of an audio file. Technically speaking, it is an electronic composition resembling the tape compositions of the last century, although here electronically produced sounds form only a part of this composition. In addition to sounds produced by synthesizers and samplers, there are also recordings, often heavily manipulated, of acoustic instruments, spoken dialogue, audience rumble and street noise.

Marijn Simons

Simons was born in The Netherlands on December 25, 1982. He studied violin with Prof. Saschko Gawriloff, composition with Daan Manneke and James MacMillan and conducting with Ed Spanjaard, Jean- Bernard Pommier and Prof. Kenneth Kiesler.

Marijn Simons is Conductor and Artistic Director of the Simons Ensemble. Since 2012 he is Assistant Conductor at the Opernfestspiele in Heidenheim. During the 2013 edition of the Opernfestspiele Heidenheim Simons was Artistic Director of the bi-annual Zeitgenossen festival. 
Simons has conducted amongst others the Stuttgart Philharmonic, Nuremberg Symphony Orchestra, Aachen Symphony Orchestra, West Saxon Symphony Orchestra, Staatsorchester Rheinische Philharmonie (Koblenz), Südwestdeutsche Philharmonie (Konstanz), Cappella Aquileia (Heidenheim), Audite Nova Ensemble (Heidenheim), St. Petersburg Chamber Orchestra, Yekaterinburg Chamber Orchestra, Mineralnye Vody Philharmonic, Radio Chamber Orchestra (Bucharest), State Philharmonic Orchestra of Sibiu, Limburg Symphony Orchestra, Nieuw Amsterdams Peil, the Simons Ensemble and the Czech Philharmonic Choir Brno. With the Kharkiv Philharmonic Simons conducted the first performance in the Ukraine of Mahler’s Symphony no. 1 including the symphonic movement Blumine. 

Simons has also performed worldwide as a violinist. Highlights from his solo career include the world première of Villa-Lobos’s violin concerto Fantasia de Movimentos Mixtos with the National Symphony Orchestra of Mexico conducted by Enrique Diemecke, the Italian première of Milhaud’s 2nd violin concerto with the Orquesta Sinfónica Siciliana and the Dutch première of MacMillan’s violin concerto A Deep but Dazzling Darkness with the Radio Chamber Orchestra conducted by the composer. Simons also played as a Concert Master with several German orchestras including the Aachen Symphony Orchestra, WDR Radio Orchestra Cologne, Nuremberg State Philharmonic and at the Deutsche Oper am Rhein with the Düsseldorf Symphony Orchestra and the Duisburg Philharmonic.

Simons' compositions have been commissioned and performed by such conductors and soloists as Esa-Pekka Salonen, Marin Alsop, Peter Eötvös, James MacMillan, Marcus Bosch, Christian Lindberg, Evelyn Glennie, Dorothee Oberlinger and by orchestras and ensembles such as the Los Angeles Philharmonic, Cabrillo Festival Orchestra, Rotterdam Philharmonic, The Hague Philharmonic, Netherlands Radio Philharmonic Orchestra, Aachen Symphony Orchestra, Prague Chamber Orchestra, Vietnam National Symphony Orchestra, Cuarteto Latinoamericano, Tambuco Percussion Ensemble and the 12 Cellists of the Berlin Philharmonic. 
Simons was Composer-in-Residence at the Orlando Festival, Delft Chamber Music Festival, Cabrillo Festival and the Zeitgenossen festival. His compositions have been performed at concert venues such as the Concertgebouw Amsterdam, Konzerthaus Dortmund, Cologne Philharmonic Hall, Walt Disney Concert Hall (Los Angeles), National Centre for the Arts (Mexico City) and the Hanoi Opera House.
October 2014 saw the world première of his first opera Emilia Galotti commissioned by the Koblenz Theatre. 

He has received the Philip Morris Arts Prize, Limburg Culture Award, Wim Bary Perspective Award and his composition The City of the Soul has been awarded Best Dutch Choral Composition in 2001.