Latvijas Radio Koris - workshop in Riga
photo Leo Samama
The Tenso Young Composers Workshop gives participants a chance to work closely with a professional chamber choir so that they may enhance their knowledge of vocal techniques and the musical possibilities of "the choir as instrument". The workshop, which was organized for the first time in 2010, initially chose six composers from 91 applicants from all over Europe to come to Oslo to participate in the first round. During two afternoon sessions the workshop leaders worked with the young composers and heard their scores (short pieces or sketches) performed by the Latvijas Radio Koris. Based on this experience, the three finalists where chosen to participate in the second round in Riga this past March. Both workshops were led by James Wood (composer/conductor, UK), Kaspars Putniņsh (conductor of the Latvijas Radio Koris, LV) and Leo Samama (composer and chief artistic advisor of Tenso, NL) with the participation of the Latvijas Radio Koris.
The awarding of a final prize is not a judgment on the works that were presented during the workshop, but should be seen as an encouragement for a young composer to write a new work for a cappella choir. The jury awarded the prize to the composer who, in their view, will most benefit from the commission and at the same time whose previous work shows a fascinating sound world that, translated to a score for choir, will be a valuable contribution to the choral repertoire.
The jury was highly impressed by the work that the three participants brought to the second round of the workshop. All scores - whether sketches or complete pieces - showed maturity and well-thought-out writing for choir, that in many ways are on a par with the work of better-known contemporary composers. The jury hopes to see more choral scores from all three participants in the coming years, and encourages them to develop their compositional skills, not as an end in itself but as a means to express their individual musical ideas.
In their unanimous choice to give the award to Laurent Durupt, the jury was persuaded by the promise of this young composer who is now starting to develop his musical ideas in scores for choir. The fact that Durupt had not composed for choir before was certainly a contributing factor for their choice. In the sketches he presented, Durupt sometimes used complex techniques, but always as a means to communicate ideas, and he never lost sight of this goal. While Durupt can certainly benefit from the advices given during the workshop - on the efficacy of different vocal techniques, on how to translate his musical ideas to the possibilities of a chamber choir, and especially on how to notate these - the jury is convinced that Laurent Durupt has a story to tell, and looks forward to hearing more from this promising young composer.
The award consists of a commission to write a new work for a cappella choir, to be performed by the European Tenos choirs in their regular concert seasons, and a commission fee of € 1250. During the composition process, Laurent Durupt will be given the opportunity to regularly consult the jury members and to work on his work-in-progress with the Latvijas Radio Koris. The premiere will take place in 2012/2013.
Tenso Young Composers Workshop - The choir as instrument
workshop leaders: James Wood, Leo Samama and Kaspars Putniņsh
with the participation of: Latvijas Radio Koris
first round: Oslo, 16 and 17 September 2010
final round: Riga, 10 and 11 March 2011
participants final round:
· Laurent Durupt (France 1978)
· Maria Kallionpää (Finland/Austria 1981)
· Lauri Mäntysaari (Finland 1982)
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