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Arditti Quartet with works by Tansy Davies, Milica Djordjević, Karola Obermüller, Hilda Paredes and Rebecca Saunders

Sun 01 August 2021, 19.30
Lichtenbergschule (Große Sporthalle)

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Karola Obermüller: xs – 9′
I. (2005)
II. (2012)
III. (2019)
European Premiere of the complete version

Milica Djordjević: The Death of the Star-Knower – petrified echoes of an epitaph in a kicked crystal of time I & II (2008/09) – 16′

Tansy Davies: Nightingales: Ultra-Deep Field (2020) – 17′

BREAK (10 minutes)

Hilda Paredes: Hacia una bitácora capilar (2013/14) – 9′

Rebecca Saunders: Fletch (2012) – 15′


Arditti Quartet:
Irvine Arditti (Violin)
Ashot Sarkissjan (Violin)
Ralf Ehlers (Viola)
Lucas Fels (Cello)

The Arditti Quartet is without doubt an institution. Since the formation of the quartet by Irvine Arditti in London in 1974, the ensemble has given the first performances of several hundred string quartets dedicated to the group. The profound virtuoso and outstanding ability of the four musicians has been documented in over 200 CD productions. What is more, the Arditti Quartet has influenced generations of young composers during the last four decades – also at the Darmstadt Summer Course. Since the 1980s, the ensemble has been a fixed element of the festival program with only a few exceptions. This year, ‘the Ardittis’ will present four string quartets by five female composers from their repertoire. Karola Obermüller, originally from Darmstadt, began her musical training at the local music conservatoire Akademie für Tonkunst and is today professor of composition at the University of New Mexico. She participated in the Darmstadt Summer Course in 2006 – the same year in which the Arditti Quartet premiered her work xs to which she has subsequently made several revisions. Tansy Davies was born in Bristol: work on her composition Nightingales: Ultra deep field was undertaken precisely during the strange atmosphere of lockdown which sharpened all the senses in the spring of 2020. The works of the Mexican composer Hilda Paredes who resides in London, the Serbian composer Milica Djordjević now based in Berlin and Rebecca Saunders who is also based in Berlin have accompanied the Arditti Quartet for a long period. The British composer Saunders commented on Fletch, which provided the title of this year’s concert: “‘Fletch’ is the English word for the feather at the end of an arrow. The feathers ensure a good flight. I like the image, but also the sound of the word, which is associated with the fundamental sound of this piece. Something is shot into the air and brought into flight. […] Surface, weight and intuition are part of the reality of musical performance: the weight of the bow on the string, the differentiation of touch of the fingers of the left hand on the strings… the essential materiality of a sound, the grit and noise of an instrument, tracing the essence of fragments of color, exploring the physical gesture which creates a trace of sound.”

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