C1594. BRUNO MADERNA Cond. SWR Sinfonieorchester, Koln: 'Prague' Symphony #38 in D, K.504 (Mozart), Live Performance, 16 June, 1970; GRUPPEN FOR THREE ORCHESTRAS [Stockhausen, Maderna & Boulez] (Stockhausen), Live Performance, 17 June, 1959; BRUNO MADERNA Cond. Orchestre de la Résidence de la Haye, w. Halina Lukomska (S): Exultate Jubilate, K.165 (Mozart), Live Performance, 14 Dec., 1966. (Canada) St Laurent Studio T-605. Transfers by Yves St Laurent.
“Calling for no fewer than three orchestras and a total of 109 players, Karlheinz Stockhausen’s GRUPPEN is one of the 20th century’s most monumental pieces of music. GRUPPEN (1955-57) is a challenge for conductors. In a standard orchestra piece, there is one maestro on the podium, leading all the players. But in GRUPPEN each orchestra plays at a different tempo, and they can easily fall out of sync. Simon Rattle described GRUPPEN as being ‘irritatingly complex’. It calls for three orchestras and three conductors. Stockhausen left detailed guidelines. In the score he specified the exact number of rehearsal hours that players had put in before the first performance in 1958. There were six conductors and rehearsals of two hours each. ‘Each orchestra is very complicated on its own, but when you put the three together, it’s like this dizzying tessellation of rhythms and sounds’, Mr. Rattle said. ‘It meant coordinating all these desperately complicated rhythms and cues, and not losing your head, and being able to see each other from a distance’.
Ensemble Intercontemporain - a contemporary music group founded by Pierre Boulez who conducted one of the orchestras for the first performance of GRUPPEN, recalled meeting Stockhausen at a performance of one of his own compositions. While GRUPPEN might sound chaotic and free, he noted, it was ‘almost fascistically ordered’. Arising from the desolation of postwar Germany, it was an attempt to put some kind of order on a musical world after this total disorder had happened’. Somewhere in Stockhausen’s mind, Mr. Rattle concluded, ‘there was this idea that we will create this new music which is utterly not to do with the history that came before it’.”
- Farah Nayeri, THE NEW YORK TIMES, 29 June, 2018
"Polish soprano Halina Lukomska studied voice with Stanislawa Zawadzka and Maria Halfterowa at the Higher State Music School in Warsaw, where she received her diploma in 1954. She continued her studies with Giorgio Favaretto in Siena (1958) and Toti Dal Monte in Venice (1959-60). In 1956, she won the 1st prize at the International Vocal Competition in Hertogenbosch.
In 1960, Halina Lukomska began her international career, giving concerts at festivals in Edinburgh, Perugia, Vienna, Warsaw, Toulouse, and many other places, and performing with major orchestras around the world. The singer made several recordings for the Philips, Columbia, EMI, Polskie Nagrania, and Harmonia Mundi labels. She became known as a great interpreter of contemporary music and performed vocal works by Luigi Nono, Witold Lutoslawski, Pierre Boulez, Bruno Maderna, Kazimierz Serocki, Arnold Schoenberg, Anton Webern, Alban Berg and Igor Stravinsky. She frequently also sang works written by her husband-composer Augustyn Bloch."
"Bruno Maderna, like his close friend and fellow avant garde composer Pierre Boulez, had in recent years become a conductor of international reputation. Since his debut here in 1970 conducting Mercadante's opera II GIURAMENTO at the Juilliard School, Mr. Maderna had led the New York Philharmonic, the Chicago Symphony, the Philadelphia Orchestra, the Boston Symphony and the Detroit Symphony. In Europe he had conducted widely, including the London Symphony, the B.B.C. Symphony and the Concertgebouw in Amsterdam. For the last two years of his life he was music director of the Italian Radio in Milan.
Mr. Maderna did not put great stock in his, or anyone's, success on the podium. 'The era of the star conductor is finished', he told a NEW YORK TIMES interviewer in 1972. In place of that phenomenon we must have, he contended, composer-conductors who could guide the musical life of their communities. His ideal in this respect was Mr. Boulez, the New York Philharmonic's music director.
Mr. Maderna, who was born in Venice, made his New York City Opera debut [in 1972] conducting a new production of DON GIOVANNI."
- THE NEW YORK TIMES, 14 Nov., 1973