Kurt Schwertsik's music is mercurial and idiosyncratic with a refreshing lightness of touch * Though a pupil of Stockhausen, the composer rejected serialism in favour of new forms of tonality * His search for an 'alternative' modern culture draws inspiration from Satie and the Dada movement * Output includes operas, the Irdische Klänge orchestral cycle (1980-92), concertos for violin, alphorn, guitar, double bass, timpani and flute, and numerous song cycles * Has collaborated on four widely-toured danceworks with choreographer Johann Kresnik * Featured composer at leading festivals, including Almeida, Adelaide, Wien Modern and the Alternative Vienna series in London
Works by Kurt Schwertsik include:
Vienna Chronicles (1976-77) ballet suites for orchestra
The Wondrous Tale of Fanferlizzy Sunnyfeet (1982-83) Fairytale opera in ten scenes
Nachtmusiken (2009) for orchestra
Looking Ahead: world premiere at Leipzig Gewandhaus of Muertes en Relajo commissioned by MDR Symphony Orchestra under Dennis Russell Davies (26 Mar 2023); 90th birthday in 2025
Video: View an interview with Kurt Schwertsik talking about his life and music.
"Schwertsik's music is homespun, witty, nostalgic, vegetarian, politically liberal, intelligent, anti-authoritarian, widely-read, and deeply in love with tradition." — Financial Times