Led by their artistic director Pavel Šnajdr, the Brno Contemporary Orchestra on 31 January in Besední dům, Brno, presented the first of the two concerts commemorating and celebrating the 100th anniversary of the founding of Czechoslovakia. It was named FROM CZECHOSLOVAKIA and the programme consisted of new pieces by Petr Bakla, Luboš Mrkvička and Marián Lejava (SK). The latter concert, titled FOR CZECHOSLOVAKIA, will on 20 March, on the contrary, present compositions by foreign authors written for the ensemble, or, for us, Czechs and Slovaks.
The concert was opened with Bakla’s Elsewhere, a piece dealing with the ambiguity suggested in the title and thus creating its musical effect through gradual changes in colour and growth of tension. It was followed with part C from Mrkvička’s extensive open cycle For Large Ensemble which was, by contrast, distinguished by its dramatic character, ferociousness and almost march-like brass section. The final piece was Vertigo, a virtuosic violin concerto by Slovak composer Marián Lejava dedicated to the outstanding Milan Paľa. The evening received enthusiastic response, as well as some lamentation concerning the low attendance and the fragile position of contemporary music in our country.
31 January 2018, Besední dům, Brno
Petr Bakla: Elsewhere (world premiere)
Luboš Mrkvička: For Large Ensemble – part C (world premiere)
Marián Lejava: Vertigo (world premiere)
Brno Contemporary Orchestra, conductor: Pavel Šnajdr