Morton Feldman

Profile

subsequently studied electronic music with Hans Ulrich Humpert and composition with Johannes Fritsch at the Hochschule für Musik und Tanz in Cologne. His first solo release appeared on the French label Odd Size in 1992. In 1995, Schmickler co-founded the DJ collective Brüsseler-Platz-10a-Musik, and in 1996 he produced the first entirely digital post-rock album, Pickup Canyon, under the pseudonym Pluramon. Since the mid-1990s, Schmickler has emerged as a prolific and versatile composer of music for film, theatre and radio plays. He often collaborates with the Berlin playwright Felix Ensslin and has composed music for electronics, chorus, chamber music ensemble and orchestra. In 2009, as part of the International Year of Astronomy, Schmickler created a large-scale work based on astronomical data, entitled Bonner Durchmusterung, for electronics and projected images.  Corinna Belz (Marburg, 1955) is a filmmaker, scriptwriter and actor. Belz studied philosophy, art history, and film, theatre, and television sciences in Cologne, Berlin and Zürich, and is today seen as one of Germany's leading documentary makers. Her breakthrough came in 2002 with the documentary Ein anderes Amerika (A Different America), which won the German Bar Association’s film prize. It portrayed the United States following the World Trade Centre attacks. For her film Gerhard Richter Painting (2011), shown in the Netherlands by VPRO Cinema among others, she spent three years in the German painter's atelier. The film won the 2012 Deutsche Filmpreis (Lola Award) in the best documentary category. Belz' film Peter Handke.Bin im Wald. Kann sein, daß ich mich verspäte had its cinematic release in 2016.  Morton Feldman (1926-1987) was a leading American composer, who is regarded as one of the most important composers of the twentieth century. Feldman studied composition with Schönberg disciple Wallingford Riegger and former Webern student Stefan Wolpe; but the decisive encounter in his musical life was with John Cage, who encouraged him to break away from old compositional models, such as traditional harmony and serial techniques. Feldman is often associated with the experimental New York School, along with Cage, Christian Wolff and Earle Brown. In the 1950’s Feldman experimented with graphic notation and freedoms for the performers. From the 1970’s he used conventional notation. Through Cage, Feldman met various other prominent figures from the New York art scene, including visual artists Jackson Pollock, Philip Guston and Robert Rauschenberg, the composers Henry Cowell, Virgil Thomson and George Antheil and the writer Frank O’Hara. Feldman was especially inspired by the works of the abstractexpressionist painters. He expressed his indebtedness with titles such as Rothko Chapel (1971) and For Frank O’Hara (1973). In 1977 he wrote the opera Neither, set to a text by Samuel Beckett. Until 1973 Feldman worked as a composer as well as holding a full time job in his family’s textile business. That year he started lecturing in composition at the State University of New York in Buffalo, a position he held until his death. Especially his later chamber music, from 1977, tends to be soft, slow and intimate. These works are often extremely long. For Philip Guston (1984), for instance, is 4 hours long; his Second String Quartet (1983) measures 6 hours. Shortly after his marriage to the Canadian composer Barbara Monk, Feldman died of pancreatic cancer.  Ensemble Musikfabrik is a contemporary music ensemble based in Cologne and has earned a reputation as one of the leading groups in its field. Musikfabrik was founded in 1990, and made its debut in 1991 at the Wittener Tage für neue Kammermusik under the name Ensemble Neue Musik Nordrhein-Westfalen. Ensemble Musikfabrik dedicates itself to performing new and unfamiliar compositions, many commissioned by the ensemble. Musikfabrik has built a close collaborative connection with guest artists including Louis Andriessen, Stefan Asbury, Richard Ayres, Harrison Birtwistle, Peter Eötvös, Vinko Globokar, Heiner Goebbels, Toshio Hosokawa, Nicolaus A. Huber, Mauricio Kagel, Helmut Lachenmann, Wolfgang Rihm, Karlheinz Stockhausen, Sasha Waltz and Hans Zender. The ensemble performs approximately eighty concerts a year in Germany and internationally, and presents a unique series of world premieres at the WDR in Cologne. Interdisciplinary projects with live electronics, dance, theatre, film, literature and the visual arts also serve to broaden the familiar conventions surrounding conducted ensemble concerts, as do chamber music concerts, debate concerts and improvisation. Last year they played with electronic artists Mouse on Mars, conductor André de Ridder and a group of percussion robots in the program Robots/Non/Robots.  Chamber choir Cappella Amsterdam was founded in 1970 by Jan Boeke and has been under the artistic leadership of chief conductor Daniel Reuss since 1990. The choir excels in both early and modern music and devotes particular attention to the works of Dutch composers ranging from Sweelinck to Louis Andriessen and Ton de Leeuw. Such composers as Robert Heppener and Jan van Vlijmen have written works especially for the choir. Cappella Amsterdam often participates in opera productions such as Karlheinz Stockhausen’s Sonntag aus Licht at the Cologne Opera (2011), and Wolfgang Rihm's Dionysos, presented during the 2010 Holland Festival. During the 2014 Holland Festival, Cappella Amsterdam also contributed significantly to the Nono trilogy. In addition to collaborating with such prominent Dutch ensembles as the Orchestra of the Eighteenth Century, the Royal Concertgebouw Orchestra and ASKO|Schönberg, Cappella Amsterdam regularly works with renowned international organisations including the Akademie für Alte Musik Berlin, the RIAS Kammerchor, Ensemble Musikfabrik, Il Gardellino and the Estonian Philharmonic Chamber Choir. The choir was nominated in 2010 for the Amsterdam Arts Prize and an Edison Classical Listening Audience Award. Their 2010 recording of Frank Martin's Golgotha was nominated for a Grammy. A CD from 2012 containing choral works by Leoš Janáček and their highly praised recording (2016) of Arvo Pärt's Kanon Pokajanen both received an Edison Classical Award.