Thomas Simaku at the ISCM World Music Days 2012
Posted on 5 February 2012
Thomas Simaku’s work ‘Soliloquy V – Flauto
Acerbo’ has been selected by the International Jury and will
be performed at the 2012 ISCM – World Music Days. More
details can be found in the announcement of the ISCM British
As the title suggests, this piece is part of
the Soliloquy Cycle – a series of virtuoso works for various
instruments that Simaku has composed over the last decade.
It was commissioned by the BBC Performing Arts Fund and
Christopher Orton, who gave the world premiere at the 2008
Greenwich International Early Music Festival. It won a
British Composer Award in 2009 from BASCA; the judging panel
‘unanimously agreed that the winning work redefines the
instrument in a visionary and entirely original way. They
praised it for its virtuosity, depth of expression, and
powerful imagination.’ You can hear the piece performed by
the dedicatee on Youtube.
Thomas Simaku on BBC Radio 3
Posted on 6 December 2011
Thomas Simaku's String Quartet No 4, written for and dedicated to Quatuor Diotima, was broadcast on BBC Radio 3 Hear & Now - Highlights from Huddersfield Contemporary Music Festival - on 3rd December 2011, alongside works by Mauricio Kagel, Brian Ferneyhough and Bent Sorensen. The programme can be heard on Radio 3 iPlayer until 11 December.
World premiere of Thomas Simaku's String Quartet No 4 at HCMF
Posted on 22 November 2011
The String Quartet, written for and dedicated to Quatuor Diotima, will receive its world premiere at the Huddersfield Contemporary Music Festival on 26 November 2011. As the composer writes in his programme note, “the piece consists of four movements and two virtuoso interludes strategically ‘positioned’ on either side of the slow third movement. A network of interconnections is established throughout the work and each movement ends in silence, whose role is not only to bring their respective ‘chapters’ to a close, but at the same time to create a necessary breathing space – there is no break (!), as such, between movements – they are linked by silence" http://www.hcmf.co.uk/event/show/213/
Thomas Simaku’ s music will also be featured at
the 32 Encontre Internacional de Compositors 2011, in Spain.
His music will be
featured in six concerts between 17 November and 2 December
2011, including Soliloquy IV for Bass Clarinet
by David Romero at Fundació ACA, Plenilunio
by the Orquestra Simfònica de les Illes Balears at the
Superior in Palma, whilst Lluïsa Espigolé will give the
world premiere of Hommage à Kurtag for piano at
Conservatory of Music in Barcelona.
Thomas Simaku nominated for BASCA Award 2011
Thomas Simaku's work Soliloquy IV for Bass Clarinet has been nominated for a British Composer Award 2011 as one of the three finalists in the Instrumental Solo or Duo Category. The nomination shortlists were announced on BBC Radio 3 on Tuesday 18th October. The prestigious awards are presented by the British Academy of Songwriters, Composers and Authors (BASCA) and sponsored by PRS in association with BBC Radio 3 providing exclusive broadcast coverage of the Awards.
This piece is part of the Soliloquy Cycle - a series of virtuoso works for various solo instruments. As the composer explains 'the idiosyncratic quality of the Bass Clarinet piece is to be found in the rich and powerful (but also delicate) sonorities of the instrument, as well as the high degree of virtuosity, which lies at the edge of what's possible!' The UK premiere was given by Sarah Watts on 18th September 2010 at St Leonard's Shoreditch Church in London, as part of the 'Rare-scale Premiere Series'. Thomas Simaku won a 2009 BASCA Award with his recorder piece, which the judging panel described as 'visionary and entirely original.'
Simaku at Cervantes
May 2010 - Three Premières for Simaku
Thomas Simaku’s work Ed e’ subito sera, based on the poem by the Nobel Prize-winning Sicilian poet Salvatore Quasimodo, was given its American premiere on 2 May 2010 at the University of Minnesota by Nickolai Kolarov (cello) and Jill Dawe (piano). Whereas his other work Soliloquy IV was given its first performance at Cervantes Institute in Vienna on 3rd May 2010 by the Bass Clarinet player Carlos Galvez.
“As the title suggests, this is the fourth piece of a series of works for solo instruments. After the première of Soliloquy I for violin at the 2000 ISCM Festival, the idea of composing a series of solo works materialized itself – the cycle so far consists of seven works. With each piece the aim was to create different characters within the same protagonist who narrates in different languages, as it were. In this particular work, the linear contours based on ‘white modality’, but constantly ‘surrounded’ by chromatic inflections, are at the heart of the musical discourse. The idiosyncratic quality of the piece is perhaps to be found in the textural dynamism and the high degree of virtuosity, as well as the rich sonorities of the instrument.”
Dr Thomas Simaku also gave a lecture on his award-winning works Radius – String Quartet No 2, and Soliloquy V – Flauto Acerbo at the Vienna Conservatoire on 5 May 2010.
As part of the York Spring
Festival, Simaku’s new song Locked
based on the poem of the same title by Visar Zhiti, will
be given its
world première at the
National Centre for Early Music on 14th May 2010 by Marja
and Mark Hutchinson.
Simaku on BBC Radio 3
Thomas Simaku’s String Quartet No 2 – Radius was featured on BBC Radio 3's flagship contemporary music programme Hear and Now, on Saturday 2 January 2010. The programme, Highlights from the Huddersfield Contemporary Music Festival 2009, will be available to listen to online on the Radio 3 website for seven days after broadcast, as part of the 'listen again' feature. The performance is by the Paris-based Diotima Quatuor.
Awarded Honorary Prize by the Accademia Costantiniana di Lettere, Arti e Scienze in Rome, Radius was first performed by the Kreutzer Quartet at the 2003 Augsburg Festival in Germany. The work was subsequently selected by the international jury for the 2004 World Music Days – ISCM Festival in Switzerland, where it was performed by the Arditti Quartet, and it is included in Simaku’s CD portrait on Naxos records.