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Svoboda, Mike: Inner Antiphony (2009) 13'
Fanfare for orchestra and two percussionists



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This work is available from Boosey & Hawkes for the world.

World Premiere

Stadthalle, Chemnitz
Frank Lange & André Schieferdecker, percussion / Robert-Schumann-Philharmonie / Frank Beermann

Composer's Notes


As a musical genre, fanfares are usually very short, very loud, compact works with fast, repetitive motives and the effect of a signal. They open venues and festivals, and celebrate jubilees and heroes. Although Inner Antiphony - Hexatonal Fanfare for Orchestra and Two Percussionists, commissioned by the Robert Schumann Philharmonie and its conductor Frank Beermann, at 13 minutes long significantly exceeds the usual length of a fanfare, the other attributes do still apply: mechanically repetitive figures, open, parallel brass signals and a continuous very fast pulse, which disappears ever more into the background, but never completely. This work opened not only a concert (in which Schumann's Concerto for Cello and Orchestra and his First Symphony were played), but also the Schumann Year 2010, in which the composer's 200th birthday was celebrated.

For those who would like to find a reference to Schumann, there are two to be found in Inner Antiphony, although no music from him is quoted in the work. Robert Schumann is a composer figure who I have already dealt with in my piece Clara, Robert and Johannnes - Fantasy about a Love Triangle for 18 Musicians and Reciting Trombonist, and whose active psychological inner life has particularly interested me. The antiphonal relationship of the two solo percussionists, with their here and there intertwining rhythms, can be seen as a metaphor for the angst of the artist. And the six-tone (hexatonal) tone structure used by me in this piece is as close to the harmonic world of our so-called popular music as to Schumann's works on folk music in his time.

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