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Cello Biënnale

Two iconic works and a world premiere


Oct 27 2022

Asko|Schönberg presents a program in the Cello Biennale with work by Ligeti, Grisey and Grahl, conducted by Bas Wiegers.

György Ligeti turned musical history on its head by outlining a picture of the future of music that would shake the laws of melody and harmony to their very foundations. He tempted audiences into discovering new worlds of sound by using tone clusters constructed from very densely compressed layers of notes. To infinity and beyond.


In Partiels, a movement from the cycle Les Espaces Acoustiques by the French composer Gérard Grisey, the acoustic qualities of a sound take priority, rather than any melody. The music is stretched out over time, to create the space that every subtlety of a sound actually needs. This is music that takes analysis as its starting point but ends up making a physical impact on the listener.

These monumental 20th century works both open with the note E; in Partiels, it erupts into the concert hall like a bolt from the blue. The Cello Concerto starts on an almost inaudible E that slowly reveals itself to the listener.


These two iconic pillars of the repertoire flank the new Double Concerto by the Dutch-Canadian composer Trevor Grahl. The musical and physical dialogue between the two cello soloists permeates this double concerto like a leitmotiv, very much in line with the theme of the festival – The Cello Moves.

Gérard Grisey


Trevor Grahl

Lightweight - commissioned by Cello Biënnale and Asko|Schönberg

György Ligeti



Bas Wiegers conductor
Sebastiaan van Halsema cello
Lidy Blijdorp cello
Reinhard Latzko cello

Photo: Sebastiaan van Halsema, by Eduardus Lee

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Oct. 27 2022




Muziekgebouw aan 't IJ