Tālivaldis Ķeniņš (1919–2008): Violin Concerto (1974), Concerto for Five Percussionists and Orchestra (1983), Beatae voces tenebrae (1977). Eva Bindere - violin 
Mikus Bāliņš - percussion 
Elvijs Endelis - percussion 
Elīna Endzele - percussion 
Guntars Freibergs - percussion 
Ernests Mediņš - percussion 
Latvian National Symphony Orchestra 
Andris Poga - conductor

Catalogue Number: 07Z018

Label: Skani

Reference: LMIC 088

Format: CD

Price: $14.98

Description: Tālivaldis ĶENIŅŠ is one of the most notable Latvian composers – a neo-romantic, harsh, full of life, a technical virtuoso. Born in Latvia and having studied in France, he lived in Canada for the remainder of his life. Ķeniņš is one of Canada’s most performed composers. He was a long-time lecturer in the Faculty of Music at the University of Toronto and a full professor since 1973. He was active in the Canadian League of Composers, serving as its president for two years. He also participated in radio broadcasts and served as a jury member for countless competitions. Ķeniņš’ contributions have been important from both the academic and practical aspect and have been recognised by the university leadership as well as the Government of Canada. Conductor Andris Poga: “Ķeniņš’ trademark is diversity – touches of modernism, expressionism and also jazz permeate most of his compositions, yet each of them is autonomous and fairly precisely defined in its intent. The Concerto for 5 Percussionists is like a bright, attractive performance; the Concerto for Violin features a fully developed concertante principle yet also has a very powerful narrative; Beatae voces tenebrae sounds like a contemplative poem and confirms Ķeniņš’ loyalty to Bach, one of the grandest of geniuses.” "The concerto was written after Ķeniņš’s emigration to Canada for the virtuoso Steven Staryk. It has a prickly Russo–Slavic accent, mid-century architectural discipline, exceptional orchestration, limitless enjoyment of what the solo instrument can do (it plays more or less constantly) and a distinctively Latvian undertone marked out by solemnity, loneliness and impassioned longing. Precise, defined expression goes hand in hand with wild fantasy (hints of Szymanowski). Even lyrical music can be intensely rhythmic, and the Percussion Concerto that follows shows the composer building on rhythmic sophistication suggested in the Violin Concerto, even if the piece goes to a different place in essence. Again, excellent performances and the extra Beatae voces tenebrae is no mere filler – an unsettling monolith that’s worth hearing alone, perhaps first. This disc is unmissable." (The Strad)


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