C0 note (16,35 Hz) — vibrating on liquid surface

D0 note (18.35 Hz) — vibrating on liquid surface

C0 note (16,35 Hz) — vibrating on liquid surface

F0 note (21.83 Hz) — vibrating on liquid surface

G0 note (24.50 Hz) — vibrating on liquid surface

A0 note (27.50 Hz) — vibrating on liquid surface


ISCM Lithuanian Section Report


The contemporary music scene is a rapidly developing field in Lithuania. Its dynamics and expansion can be exemplified by the ever-increasing number of contemporary music festivals, the already traditional new music events in the classical music festivals, the increasing number of commissions from national institutions and various music organizations, and the growing regional and international collaboration. The general tendencies of development are distinctly reflected by the fact that contemporary music events are not concentrated in big cities only. On the other hand, one can definitely speak about the openness and plurality in this field, which is particularly obvious in the programs of contemporary music festivals – each of them seeks to build its distinct profile and present an original view of the urgent issues in contemporary music.

Despite quite a large diversity of the contemporary music scene, the Lithuanian Composers’ Union remains the main initiator and coordinator of various activities and projects in this field. It unites the organisers of the leading international festivals – the largest new music festival “Gaida” (held in Vilnius since 1991), the festival of electronic and electro-acoustic music “Jauna muzika” (since 1997 in Vilnius), contemporary music festivals “Iš arti” (since 1996 in Kaunas), “Permainų muzika” (since 2005 in Klaipėda), “Druskomanija” (since 1985 in Druskininkai), “Marių klavyrai” (since 1991 in Klaipėda) and others. The ISCM Lithuanian Section and the Lithuanian Music Information and Publishing Centre founded by the Lithuanian Composers’ Union occupy an important place in developing international projects. The international dimension of collaboration is also maintained by the Musicologists’ Section operating at the Lithuanian Composers’ Union, whose basic priority is the spread and promotion of Lithuanian music and regional partnership.

The ISCM Lithuanian Section was established in 1937 and renewed its membership in 1989 with the primary mission of being an initiator of international collaboration in the frames of the ISCM. Since 2001 it coordinates the international programs of the contemporary music festival “Iš arti”, giving priority to long-term exchange projects with the ISCM national sections. Thanks to these initiatives, new music from Ukraine, Canada, Taiwan, Belgium, Holland, Sweden, USA and Japan has been presented in Lithuania. Thus the international highlights of the latest 11th festival “Iš arti” in 2005 were the presentations of contemporary music from Ukraine, USA and Japan. A guest of this festival was the band “Harmonies of the World” (Ukraine), which gave concerts in Kaunas and Vilnius and performed the compositions by the Ukrainian composers Myroslav Skorik, Volodymyr Runčak, Hanna Gavrilets, Julia Gomelskaja, Kamela Tsepkolenko and Volodymyr Zubitsky, as well as by Lithuanian composers Jurgis Juozapaitis, Algirdas Brilius and Vytautas Germanavičius. The computer music alliance from San Francisco (USA) presented electronic music and media projects by David Bithell, Dennis Aman, Dorsey Dunn and Corinne Sklar. One of the specific areas of interest of the festival “Iš arti” is the fusion of traditional and contemporary music; recently it was represented by a group of musicians playing traditional Japanese instruments that performed the compositions by Sawai Tadao, Okuda Sata, Vytautas Germanavičius, Miyagi Michio, Kiku Day, Chieko Mori and Oliver Grimm. This initiative that is already becoming a tradition will be continued in 2006 by a tour of the band “Orquesta de instrumentos autoctonos y nuevas tecnologias” (Argentine) led by Alejandro Iglesias Rossi in the framework of the festivals “Iš arti” and “Permainų muzika”.  

The global profile of the ISCM allows the ISCM Lithuanian Section to present to the  Lithuanian public contemporary non-European music. This tradition has already been established in partnership with the festival “Iš arti”, and a similar initiative has been launched in the framework of the new music festival “Gaida”. In collaboration with the ISCM South Korean Section, a project of two-way musical exchange is carried out since 2004; its two platforms are the Pan music festival (Seoul) and “Gaida” festival (Vilnius). Thus, in 2004 the Eclat Ensemble (director Jin-Soo Kim) performed the composition “Melody in the Garden of Olives” by the Lithuanian composer Onutė Narbutaitė at the Pan music festival. In 2005 the Lithuanian composers Onutė Narbutaitė, Remigijus Merkelys and the Gaida Ensemble were guests of the Pan music festival and performed the program of Lithuanian and South Korean music: works commissioned by the ISCM South Korean Section by Jong Yeoul Chong, Yoon Hee Hwang, Inho Park and the compositions by Onutė Narbutaitė, Remigijus Merkelys and Osvaldas Balakauskas. In 2006 a concert of the Eclat Ensemble will be held during the “Gaida” festival, when the works by South Korean and Japanese composers, as well as “Contactus” by the Lithuanian composer Vytautas Barkauskas, commissioned by the “Gaida” festival, are going to be performed. 

In this global age of exchange and information, direct contacts, meetings, long-term partnership and deeper knowledge of each other is gaining more importance. The ISCM Lithuanian Section does not limit itself to the initiatives of musical exchange and devotes much attention to education and maintaining the traditions. In collaboration with the Lithuanian Academy of Music and Theatre, it regularly holds master-classes of the musical ensembles invited for the festivals, as well as meetings with international composers. On the other hand, the Lithuanian audience is given a chance to learn about the history of the ISCM Lithuanian Section. In commemoration of the 100th anniversary of one of its founders, the outstanding pioneer of the Lithuanian musical avant-garde, composer Vytautas Bacevičius, the international musicological conference “Vytautas Bacevičius (1905–70) and His Contemporaries: International Links and Contexts of the First Lithuanian Music Avant-Garde” was held in Vilnius (September 16-17, 2005). A wide circle of participants from Poland, Russia, Czech Republic, Germany, France and Lithuania discussed the work, the fate and the heritage of the Central and Eastern European composers of the interwar period Alexander Tcherepnin, Alexander Tansmann, Bohuslav Martinů, Arthur Lourié and others; a special concert devoted to the interwar Paris school was held. The works by these composers are also a reminder of the history of the first decades of the ISCM festivals. As a continuation of this project, in 2007 the ISCM Lithuanian section intends to commemorate its 70th anniversary and the 100th anniversary of another one of its founders, composer Jeronimas Kačinskas. In addition to the works by Kačinskas, his teacher Alois Hába and their contemporaries, the suite “Golem” (1932) for chamber orchestra by Joseph Achron, a Lithuanian-born representative of the New Jewish School, will be performed for the first time in Lithuania. This forgotten piece was a first composition by Lithuanian-born composer performed in the World Music Days (Venice, 1932).  

The founders of the ISCM were united by their concern for the promotion of new music and the understanding of their mission not devoid of utopianism. Since the time when Arnold Schönberg founded the “Society for Private Musical Performances“, and his contemporaries Béla Bartók, Arthur Honegger, Darius Milhaud and others – the ISCM, the world of contemporary music has changed beyond recognition. However, no matter how the situation of contemporary composers and the institutional structure of contemporary music may differ from the context of their predecessors, we have inherited their imperatives – to collaborate and to renew. On the agenda of the ISCM Lithuanian Section is the project of the World New Music Days in Lithuania, more active cooperation with the new members of the ISCM, regional neighbours (Latvia, Russia and others), new exchange projects with the national sections of the ISCM etc. To coordinate the bustling activity of the ISCM Lithuanian Section, its board has been expanded, and presently it consists of Rūta Goštautienė (president), Vytautas Germanavičius (vice president), Rūta Gaidamavičiūtė, Osvaldas Bakalauskas, Vidmantas Bartulis, Linas Paulauskis, Gintaras Sodeika, Mindaugas Urbaitis and Vytautas V. Jurgutis.     


Rūta Goštautienė




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