Saturday, October 18, 2014

The Great War


Now, at the 100th anniversary of that conflict, I find myself writing several pieces that connect to it: an opera of sorts on the sinking of the battleship Szent István for the wonderful Klagenfurter Ensemble, my favorite favorites; a longish solo piano work for the fabulously talented Slovenian pianist Davorin Mori that is a series of portraits of anti-war activists from the period; and a commissioned song for Heidi Moss as part of a multi-composer project of Lieder Alive!, in German, a setting of a war poem, Schlacht - Das Maß, a strange work which had even a stranger history after the first world war. So many people love war - absolutely love it - and that period of European and specifically German history at the beginning of the 20th century to the middle of it, seemed to be so much about that love, and it's very hard for me to understand. I'm trying to put that difficulty of understanding into the music somehow, probably too subtle but whatevs.
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