Horatiu Radulescu: String Quartet No. 5 “before the universe was born”
The JACK Quartet performs the United States premiere of Horatiu Radulescu’s String Quartet No. 5 “before the universe was born” as part of its February 14, 2011 performance on Monday Evening Concerts at Zipper Concert Hall in Los Angeles, CA.
Horațiu Rădulescu may be of interest.
From the very beginning, Rădulescu’s musical concepts, and the techniques he invented to realise them, were unconventional. For his final exams in Bucharest he composed the orchestral work Taaroa, named after the Polynesian god; this displeased his teachers, who found the idea “mystical” and “imperialistic” (Rădulescu, quoted by Krafft 2001, 47); the only member of the faculty who supported him was the composer Anatol Vieru.
Rădulescu’s spectral techniques, as they evolved through the 1970s and beyond, are quite distinct from those of his French contemporaries Gérard Grisey and Tristan Murail. His compositional aim, as outlined in his book Sound Plasma (Rădulescu 1975) was to bypass the historical categories of monophony, polyphony and heterophony and to create musical textures with all elements in a constant flux. Central to this was an exploration of the harmonic spectrum, and by the invention of new playing techniques the aim to bringing out, and sometimes to isolate, the upper partials of complex sounds, on which new spectra could be built. [via]
Many of Rădulescu’s later works derive their poetic inspiration from the Tao Te Ching of Lao-tzu, especially in the 1988 English version by Stephen Mitchell: the titles of his second, third, fourth, fifth and sixth piano sonatas, and of the fifth and sixth string quartets, are taken from this source. The piano sonatas, as well as his Piano Concerto The Quest (1996) and other later works, make use of folk melodies from his native Romania, integrating them with his spectral techniques. [via]