Composition Commission to Philippe Manoury

Wittener Tage für neue Kammermusik 2014, Germany

Planned for the 2014 new chamber music festival Wittener Tage für neue Kammermusik is a portrait of the French composer Philippe Manoury born in 1952. Since the end of the 70s composer portraits have been an integral part of the Witten festival program. The past few years have seen presentations of the following composers: Georges Aperghis (2007), Rebecca Saunders (2008), Hugues Dufourt (2009), Friedrich Cerha (2010), Stefano Gervasoni (2011), Hans Abrahamsen (2012) and Dieter Ammann (2013). In 2014 a series of Manoury’s works run through the festival program like a golden thread. These include three new compositions that are being supported by the Ernst von Siemens Music Foundation, commissioned amongst others by the West German Broadcasting Corporation WDR: in addition to the third string quartet (played by the Arditti String Quartet) and a comprehensive work for two pianos and live electronics (to be realized by the Grau Schumacher Piano Duo and the SWR Experimentalstudio) a work for chamber orchestra is also planned that is to be performed for the first time by the WDR Sinfonieorchester Köln under the baton of Peter Rundel. Manoury, who favors large line-ups, has increasingly looked to chamber music over the past few years. His music always focuses on expression and indeed sometimes on explosive expressivity. Dense, magnificently colored tonal universes, expansive developments and unforeseen events characterize Manoury’s music. It is meticulously planned while at the same time reacting to “necessities arising in the moment”. Rampant, irregular even chaotic textures form into an organic whole while “the whirr of details constituting it” seems to gradually fade. 

May 9–11, 2014
Witten, Germany 

Further Information: