Lacrimosa or 13 Magic Songs (2018)

Shalygin

Shapeshift Ensemble

Maxim Shalygin

 The Shapeshift Ensemble performs Lacrimosa or 13 Magic Songs by contemporary composer Maxim Shalygin. The piece is uniquely set for seven violins.

"Lacrimosa or 13 Magic Songs is a lamentation, man's final prayer before Judgement. This prayer can at once be incisive and show the various states of mankind: gleeful, repenting, fearful, lamenting, faithful... During the performance of the 13 Songs, the listeners' souls are supposed to pass through a series of excruciating, excessive stages, to finally reach a catharsis. This direction determines the cycle's dramaturgic structure.

My aim is to transform an immediate, openly emotional response to powerful impressions. Something most contemporary art refuses to deal with into the musical form of the Lacrimosa. For all the varied techniques to be applied in the work, its emphasis is on the emotion, its aspiration to capture the listeners' minds, immersing them in the atmosphere of each part. This idea can be realised only by a multi-voice single-timbre ensemble of violins, at once a unity and a multitude, one soul and its many voices, a number of people struggling to come at peace with the world, one another, and silence..." Maxim Shalygin

"Writing music for the common 20th-century types of classical ensembles that comprise a variety of instruments, has lost its appeal to me over the last couple of years. My musical forms tend to show a reduction to homogeneous instrumental compositions: the Marian Antiphons for 12 voices a cappella, the Insane Dances for saxophone quartet, Six Bagatelles for Two Violins, the Suite - Homage to Alfred Schnittke for three cellos, and many more. And thus, I conceived of a cycle over a lifetime, titled Similar, and its first chapter is to be the Lacrimosa or 13 Magic Songs for seven violins.

Lacrimosa or 13 Magic Songs is a lamentation, man’s final prayer before Judgement. This prayer can at once be incisive and show the various states
of mankind: gleeful, repenting, fearful, lamenting, faithful... During the performance of the 13 Songs, the listeners’ souls are supposed to pass through a series of excruciating, excessive stages, to finally reach a catharsis. This direction determines the cycle’s dramaturgic structure."

 

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Maxim Shalygin

Shalygin began studying composition seriously at the age of sixteen with Irina Ivashenko. In 2004 he trained for one year with Boris Tishchenko at the N. Rimsky-Korsakov St. Petersburg State Conservatory (RU). He received his first master degree in 2010 at the National Music Academy in Kiev (UA). One year later, in 2011, Shalygin received his second master degree at the Royal Conservatory of The Hague (NL), where he studied with Cornelis de Bondt and Diderik Wagenaar. He currently lives and works in the Netherlands.

Spiritual quests always involve some degree of confidence. Confidence in something that exists beyond the surface of this material world. Something beyond the horizon, beyond the borders of the visible. Transcendence and reunification with oneself are two phases of being. The true artists of all times have been pilgrims on this road. Maxim Shalygin is one of them, not following the footsteps of his predecessors but heading for the same destination.

For over ten years, Maxim has been occupied with a project for a lifetime: music for solo instruments. “The most concealed, intimate and deep things can only be expressed by a single instrument,” he says. In each of his solo works Shalygin reaches an exalted state, giving the instrument a special voice. The “9 Preludes” for piano solo, the “Letters to Anna” symphony for violin solo, “Musique de fer” for one percussionist and “Trembling Music” for accordion solo are the results of close cooperation with such unique performers as Vitaly Lyman and Antony Baryshevsky (piano), Emmy Storms (violin), Konstantyn Napolov (percussion) and Vincent van Amsterdam (accordion), respectively. On the other hand, Shalygin explores writing for symphony and chamber orchestras. His works, “Passacaglia Es-moll,” “Triple Concerto Des-dur” and “Lullaby” for strings have been performed in many concert halls.

Another important thread throughout the composer’s work is music for ballet. His cooperation with choreographer Lonneke van Leth resulted in scores for several ballets: “Suite – Homage to Alfred Schnittke,” “Nachtnet” and “Odysseus,” that were performed during the Holland Dance Festival and have enjoyed successes in many Dutch theaters.

Shalygin is the author of a wealth of electroacoustic compositions. He considers some of these as a kind of musical cinema. “Two Hours in Reservoir” (using Joseph Brodsky’s recitation voice) and “When everything ends, we start to sing our songs” are musical works of over 50 minutes in length with ‘plots’ that engage the listener in ever-changing streams of sound shapes.

Shalygin’s vocal music constitutes the most characteristic and intimate part of his work, its very heart. It is not concert music in the usual sense — it is poetry recited by a voice and an instrument (the piano) combined. It is music written for its own sake, which becomes a heritage  of others.

Shalygin has participated in many international competitions. For his “Letters to Anna” symphony for violin solo he obtained an honorable mention at the 2012 Gaudeamus competition. In the same year his music was selected for Lars von Trier’s “Gesamt” project. Shalygin was a composer-in-residence in IZOLYATSIA, Platform for Cultural Initiatives (Donetsk, UA) and at the Storioni Festival (Brabant, NL). His works have been performed at many music festivals worldwide, including Gaudeamus Muziekweek (NL), Musical Contrasts of the 20th Century (RU), Musical Youth Tribune and GOGOLFEST (UA), GAIDA Festival (LT), and CIME/ICEM (US). Leading contemporary music ensembles who have performed his works include Asko|Schönberg, Amsterdam Sinfonietta, DoelenKwartet, Insomnio, Nieuw Ensemble, Slagwerk Den Haag and Keuris Quartet.

photo: from artist page on website TRPTK (label)

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Lacrimosa or 13 Magic Songs (2018)

Shalygin

Shapeshift Ensemble

Cables: Furutech
Digital Converters: Hapi
Editing Software: Pyramix
Mastering Engineer: Brendon Heinst
Mastering Room: KEF Blade Two
Microphones: Sonodore
Recording Engineer: Brendon Heinst, Luuk Meijssen
Recording Software: Merging
Recording Type & Bit Rate: DXD

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TTK0020: Lacrimosa or 13 Magic Songs
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Tracks.
1.
Lacrimosa or 13 Magic Songs - I. Light
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2.
Lacrimosa or 13 Magic Songs - II. Horns
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3.
Lacrimosa or 13 Magic Songs - III. Air
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4.
Lacrimosa or 13 Magic Songs - IV. Insects
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5.
Lacrimosa or 13 Magic Songs - V. Rainbow
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6.
Lacrimosa or 13 Magic Songs - VI. Lullaby
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7.
Lacrimosa or 13 Magic Songs - VII. Stream
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8.
Lacrimosa or 13 Magic Songs - VIII. Rain
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9.
Lacrimosa or 13 Magic Songs - IX. Madness
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10.
Lacrimosa or 13 Magic Songs - X. Melancholia
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11.
Lacrimosa or 13 Magic Songs - XI. Sirens
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12.
Lacrimosa or 13 Magic Songs - XII. Prayers
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13.
Lacrimosa or 13 Magic Songs - XIII. Roundelay
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