National Theatre Brno

Orchestra & choir of the JO (Janáček Brno 2024)

In Czech music we can observe a strong existential current manifesting itself in various forms, as we can see in the programme of this concert. 

classicalmusic
violinconcerto
leosjanacek
bohuslavmartinů
orchestra
festival
mahentheatre
janáčekbrno2024

All dates

Friday

11/15/2024


7:00 PM


Mahenovo divadlo

Brno


300 - 1500 CZK

Description

ABOUT

In Czech music we can observe a strong existential current manifesting itself in various forms, as we can see in the programme of this concert. 

The violin concerto The Wandering of a Little Soul was a mere unfinished project of Leoš Janáček (1854–1928). In May 1926, when he returned from an official visit to England, where his Sonata for Violin and Piano was played by the excellent violinist Adila Fachiri, he was impressed by her performance and considered composing a violin concerto, which he called “The Wandering of a Little Soul”. However, he soon abandoned the work in progress and put the manuscript score aside. It is a mysterious composition about which we know very little. Janáček later used parts of this concerto in the overture to the opera From the House of the Dead, and it is interesting that already in the score of the violin concerto we find the banging of the prison shackles – as if a prelude to the next opera. The reconstruction of this composition was performed by Miloš Štědroň and Leoš Faltus.

Miloslav Ištvan (1928–1990) was one of the most important composers working in Brno. He came on the scene at the end of the 1940s, when he responded to musical neoclassicism and neo-folklorism, especially to Bartók and Janáček, but in the early 1960s he turned to the so-called New Music. Subsequently, he developed his own specific creative approach, which he summarized in the publication The Method of Assembling Isolated Elements in Music. Incantations of the Time is a 1967 work in four movements for symphony orchestra and high and low voices of two reciters. The decision to compose for spoken word and orchestra was brought about by his collaboration with the theatre. The text is a montage of excerpts from Oldřich Mikulášek’s collection of poems, parts of the Bible and texts by an unknown Baroque writer. Ištvan’s composition reflecting on the transience of life is one of the most impressive pieces of the second half of the 1960s.

Bouquet of Flowers, a cantata for soloists, mixed and children’s choir and orchestra, was written by Bohuslav Martinů (1890–1959) in 1937. The 1930s were typical of the composer’s increased interest in Czech and Moravian folklore. Martinů took texts of a mainly ballad-like character from the collections of K. J. Erben and František Sušil. The eight movements are introduced by a distinctive overture and the individual numbers are divided by an orchestral Selanka reminiscent of cantorial pastorelas and an Intrados. It is a less frequently performed work by Martinů, although it is one of his most remarkable compositions. Here the composer combines neo-folk tendencies with neoclassical ones, inspired mainly by Igor Stravinsky. The premiere took place under the baton of Otakar Jeremiáš in Prague in 1938 and Martinů apparently heard it only from a radio broadcast. He attributed the work to his friend, the painter Jan Zrzavý.

Jiří Zahrádka

Programme

Leoš Janáček – Violin Concerto “The Wandering of a Little Soul”

Miloslav Ištvan – Incantations of the Time 
for two narrators and orchestra

Bohuslav Martinů: Bouquet of Flowers. Cycle of pieces on folk texts for mixed (children’s) choir, solos and small orchestra, H. 260

Cast

Orchestra and Choir of the Janáček Opera of the National Theatre Brno

Brno Children’s Choir

Conductor: Robert Kružík

Violin: Jan Mráček

Soprano: Jana Šrejma Kačírková

Alto: Václava Krejčí Housková

Tenor: Vít Nosek

Baritone: Roman Hoza 

Co-performed by members of the Drama Ensemble of the National Theatre Brno

Show more
Length 70 minutes
Music
Leoš Janáček
Music
Miloslav Ištvan
Music
Bohuslav Martinů
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