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Poul Ruders (b.1949)

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Ruders - Four Dances

Ruders - Four Dances


Ruders:

Four Dances in One Movement for chamber ensemble

Nightshade

Abysm


On this disc three of Ruders’s pivotal chamber works are in the hands of one of Europe's leading new music ensembles Birmingham Contemporary Music Group.

Four Dances in One Movement (1983) is an emotional sequence of four pure musical characters. Abysm (2000), which Ruders has written for BCMG, and Nightshade (1987) are two modern tone poems rooted in both dark and moving sound worlds.

BIRMINGHAM CONTEMPORARY MUSIC GROUP (BCMG) was formed in 1987 by musicians from the City of Birmingham Symphony Orchestra and Simon Rattle, the Group’s Founding Patron. BCMG is one of Europe’s leading ensembles and has won many awards for its work in attracting new audiences for contemporary music.

OLIVER KNUSSEN is one of the most respected figures in British contemporary music. He is in international demand as an illuminating interpretation of twentieth century music, and he appears regularly with the major orchestras of the world. He was made a CBE in 1994 and is Conductor Laureate of the London Sinfonietta.

“There are few more fluent and adept composers at work these days than the Dane Poul Ruders... Four Dances in One Movement is a perfect example of his bright, biting and impulsive art, a play of brilliant skill, but never merely clever.” Sunday Times, 21st February 2010 ***

“This is a bracing, sensuous ear-opener...Ruders has always had a gift for texture and colour, a prerequisite for any composer, but he's a grand master...Oliver Knussen and his players are expert interpreters.” The Observer, 7th March 2010

BBC Music Magazine

Chamber Choice

BBC Music Magazine Awards 2011

Chamber Finalist

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Dacapo - 8226028

(CD)

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Ruders: Four Dances in One Movement for chamber ensemble, etc.

Ruders:

Four Dances in One Movement for chamber ensemble

Dramaphonia for piano solo and chamber ensemble (No. 1 of Drama Trilogy)

Erik Kaltoft (piano)

Corpus cum figuris for chamber orchestra


Aarhus Sinfonietta, Sören Kinch Hansen

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BIS - BISCD720

(CD)

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Ruders: Kafka's Trial

Ruders: Kafka's Trial


Johnny van Hal, Gisela Stille, Marianne Rørholm & Gert Henning Jensen

The Royal Danish Orchestra and Opera Choir, Thomas Søndergård

A wonderfully secure musical performance under Thomas Søndergård, and a relentlessly surreal production from Fransisco Negrin. (The Guardian)

“The enigmatic, nightmarish The Trial is, after Metamorphosis, probably Franz Kafka's most celebrated tale. Left in fragmentary form at his death, it has fascinated playwrights (such as Steven Berkoff), film-makers (among them Georg Pabst and Orson Welles) and opera composers (Gottfried von Einem and Gunther Schuller not least) for decades for both its state of incompletion – it has a beginning, an end but only part of the middle – and its surreal, uncomfortable storyline.
Is it moral fable, black satire, utter nonsense? Poul Ruders's opera to Paul Bentley's intelligent libretto, premiered in March 2005, is at least the seventh such treatment but where theirs differs from previous versions is in the attempt to link directly the creation of the story to events in Kafka's life.
As Bentley explains in the booklet, the young Czech writer may have been inspired to write TheTrial not through any political motive but rather because he had himself been subject to a 'tribunal' of sorts in Berlin, in which his fiancée – Felice Bauer – tired of his puppyish but equivocal devotions and an act of infidelity put him on trial in the lobby of his Berlin hotel. Alongside her in this kangaroo court was her friend, Greta Bloch, with whom he had been unfaithful but whom Felice had sent on purpose to meet him. From his letters, extracts of which form the basis of the long opening Prelude (featuring a troupe of mimedancers who act as postmen and comment silently on the action) and the series of 'counter-scenes' that run like a skein through the setting of the novel, it is clear Kafka was in love with both women. Was he set up? Whether or not, the episode clearly had a profound effect on him and has been the subject of much scholarly debate and at least one previous stage play, by Jan Hartman.
The two jailers aside, each character has a double life (not an unusual theatrical device, for sure, but rarely carried through in so thoroughgoing a fashion as here): Kafka alternates with his antihero, the tetchy, vacillating, powerless Joseph K – energetically sung by Johnny Van Hal – while Gisella Stille is superb as both the ambivalent fiancée Felice and Joseph K's brittle amour Miss Bürstner. Felice's accomplice Greta is sung with passion by Marianne Rørholm, doubling in two other roles from the book, Miss Montag and Leni. Ruders's setting is nervous and mostly fast-paced, the music incorporating tonal and modern expressionist elements, splashes of klezmer colouring (particularly for Kafka himself) but little that might be called comic. Yet the score abounds in moments where the orchestral accompaniment – deftly played by the Royal Danish Orchestra – seems to be mocking the hapless K/Kafka. In the end, Kafka's Trial is an unsettling rather than disturbing work, fascinating without being insightful, but undeniably entertaining.”
Gramophone Classical Music Guide, 2010

“Ruders's setting is nervous and mostly fast-paced, the music incorporating tonal and modern expressionist elements, splashes of klezmer colouring (particularly for Kafka himself) but little that might be called comic. Yet the score abounds in moments where the orchestral accompaniment - deftly played by the Royal Danish Orchestra - seems to be mocking the hapless K/Kafka. In the end, Kafka's Trial is... unsettling rather than disturbing work, fascinating without being insightful, but undeniably entertaining.” Gramophone Magazine, June 2006

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Dacapo - 8226042-43

(CD - 2 discs)

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Ruders: Nightshade Trilogy

Ruders: Nightshade Trilogy


Ruders:

Nightshade

for 10 instruments

Capricorn, Oliver Knussen

The Second Nightshade (1991)

for chamber orchestra

Odense Symphony Orchestra, Paul Mann

Final Nightshade (An Adagio of the Night)

for symphony orchestra

Odense Symphony Orchestra, Scott Yoo


Nightshade Trilogy was composed by Poul Ruders over a span of 17 years- between 1986 and 2003. In the composer’s words, it is “a collection of compositions that evoke for me an almost Gothic association with pale moonlight, tombstones crypts and the elusive shadows deep inside an ancient forest at the deep of night.”

“The disc may not be the most generously filled but 50 minutes of Ruders is to my mind worth 100 of most of his peers, and handsomely repays repeated hearings. Excellent performances and recordings virtually go without saying, though they shouldn't.” Gramophone Magazine, January 2015

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Bridge - BRIDGE9433

(CD)

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Ruders: Selma Jezková

Ruders: Selma Jezková

An opera based on Lars von Trier's “Dancer in the Dark”


Ylva Kihlberg (Selma), Palle Knudsen (Bill), Hanne Fischer (Kathy), Guido Paevatalu (Norman/Guard 2), Gert Henning-Jensen (District Attorney/Guard 1) & Carl Philip Levin (Gene)

The Royal Danish Opera & The Royal Danish Orchestra, Michael Schønwandt

Poul Ruders' opera Selma Jezková (sung in English) is based on Lars von Trier's film Dancer in the Dark and follows the heart-wrenching story of Selma, a poor factory worker with failing eyesight who sacrifices her life to ensure that her son receives an eye operation.

The opera is a dark and compelling story of fate; a highly evocative and epic performance yet also intensely distilled with a duration of just 70 minutes. In this DVD production of the 2010 Copenhagen première performance, the forces of the Royal Danish Opera are directed by Kasper Holten and framed by Christian Lemmerz' grand Gothic set design.

Conductor Michael Schønwandt commands the podium and the demanding title role is sung by Ylva Kihlberg, to whom Poul Ruders has dedicated the role.

Region Code: 0

Sung in English

Subtitles in English, German and Danish

Duration: c. 73 min + c.47 min bonus material

Bonus material: Documentary ‘From cradle to the grave’ - the making of Selma Jezková

Sound formats: Stereo, Dolby Digital 5.1, DTS 5.1

“Musically, the work is descended from Berg, in that its free tonality provides an expressive focus yet without the schematic framework becoming inflexible...The cast is dominated, as it needs to be, by Ylva Kihlberg's Selma: her dramatic soprano exudes fervency and commitment...Michael Schønwandt conducts with his customary flair...Indeed the whole production is a triumph of dramatic focus and concentration.” International Record Review, July 2011

DVD Video

Region: 0

Format: NTSC

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Dacapo - 2110410

(DVD Video)

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Ruders: The Christmas Gospel, Etude & Ricercare, The Bells

Ruders: The Christmas Gospel, Etude & Ricercare, The Bells


Ruders:

Christmas Gospel

Malmö Symphony Orchestra, Ola Rudner

Violin Concerto No. 1

Rolf Schulte (violin)

Riverside Symphony, George Rothman

Etude and Ricercare for solo guitar

David Starobin (guitar)

The Bells

Lucy Shelton (soprano)

Speculum Musicae


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Bridge - BCD9057

(CD)

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Conversations for Violin and Piano

Conversations for Violin and Piano


Koppel, H D:

Ternio Op. 53b

Nordentoft:

Two movements for violin and piano

Nørgård:

Fragment No. 5 for violin and piano

Diptychon, Op. 11 for violin and piano

Rosing-Schow:

Erigidis for violin and piano

Ruders:

Three Tiny Pieces for Great Friends

Bel Canto – for violin solo


Elisabeth Zeuthen Schneider (violin) & Ulrich Stærk (piano)

All the works on this disc were composed within the last fifty years and offer a fascinating capsule glimpse into Danish music.

They are here performed by two highly regarded Danish artists, Elisabeth Zeuthen Schneider and Ulrich Stærk.

Contemporary Music - up to 25% off

Dacapo - 8226519

(CD)

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David Starobin - Newdance

David Starobin - Newdance

18 New Dances for solo guitar


Babbitt:

Danci

Bland, W:

Rag Nouveau

Carter, E:

Shard

Duarte, J W:

Valse en Rondeau

Harvey, J:

Sufi Dance

Jaffe, S:

Spinoff

Johanson, B:

Open Up Your Ears

Lansky:

Crooked Courante

Lavista:

Natarayah

Lennon:

Gigolo

Mackey, S:

San Francisco Shuffle

Morel, Jorge:

Reflexiones Latinas

Nørgård:

Serenita

Paraskevas:

Chase Dance

Ruders:

Chaconne for solo guitar

Sørensen, B:

Angelus Waltz

Starobin, M:

The Snoid Trucks Up Broadway

Wernick:

Da'ase


1999 GRAMMY NOMINATION: BEST SOLO PERFORMANCE 1999 AFIM 'Indie' Winner: BEST SOLO ALBUM

David Starobin’s Newdance is the American guitar virtuoso’s first solo CD in more than 6 years- a disc much anticipated by guitar aficionados. Newdance consists of 18 new dance pieces by 18 leading composers, all composed for Starobin. Newdance presents an inspired and eclectic collection of new guitar music, ranging from rags, waltzes and tangos to chaconnes and courantes, to abstract visions of the dance, all performed brilliantly by the artist that Soundboard Magazine called: "arguably the most influential American classical guitarist of the 20th Century."

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Bridge - BRIDGE9084

(CD)

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Distant still

Distant still

Trios for violin, horn and piano


Eichberg:

Horn Trio

Gudmundsen-Holmgreen:

Near still distant still

Ruders:

Horn Trio


The Danish Horn Trio

On this new Dacapo release, the acclaimed Danish Horn Trio brilliantly displays three of today's leading Danish composers' work with the horn trio phenomenon. All three composers on this CD clearly nod to the genre's legacy by Brahms and Ligeti, and all are profoundly inspired by the transparent soundscape of the three fundamentally different instruments – one bowed, one blown and one struck.

“Of the three works here for the horn trio combination made classic by the masterpieces of Brahms and Ligeti...none appears overawed by the possible comparisons. Taken together, they offer a fascinating cross-section of the diversity of temperament among Danish composers. Pride of place goes to the best-known figure of Poul Ruders...[Gudmundsen-Holmgreen's work] is music that derives maximum effect from minimal means” Gramophone Magazine, October 2011

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Dacapo - 8226549

(CD)

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Exposed Throat

Exposed Throat

Trumpet Recital


Börtz:

Painting (2000)

Gruber, HK:

Exposed Throat (2000)

Henderson, R:

Variation Movements (1967)

Holloway, R:

Sonata for solo trumpet (1999)

Ruders:

Reveille & Retraite (2003)


“The tour de force of Håkan Hardenberger's latest solo trumpet recital must surely be HK Gruber's thrilling Exposed Throat.” BBC Music Magazine, April 2007 ****

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BIS - BISCD1281

(CD)

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