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Schwertsik's pocket cosmogeny in Vienna and on tour

(February 2001)

Kurt Schwertsik’s new orchestral work Zeit-Wind / Stern-Zeit (Time-Wind / Star-Time), commissioned by the Vienna Symphony Orchestra for its centenary, received its premiere on 10 January under the baton of Leopold Hager. Following its first performance at the Musikverein in Vienna the work was toured to Graz, Salzburg and Bregenz. The Vienna Symphony Orchestra has long been associated with Schwertsik’s music, particularly the Irdische Klänge cycle of works which it premiered between 1980 and 1992, and the collaboration was recently recognised when the orchestra honoured the composer with its Bruckner Ring Award.

The new work, subtitled a ‘pocket cosmogeny’, consists of four movements which fit within a symphonic groundplan but also function as character pieces with metaphysical titles. The first, Time Machine, moves forward with inexorable rhythmic drive, contrasting with the tranquil contemplation of Heavenly Bodies in the Starry Firmament. The third is a marching battle between Angel Tongues and Devil Claws, and the finale is a stormy and agitated Time-Lapse with Wind Machine.

> Further information on Work: Zeit-Wind/Stern-Zeit

© Sarah Ainslie

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