Past Event

Ancient Structures & Inexorable Lust- The US Premiere of ...fließend... by Georg Haas

November 2, 2022
8:00 PM - 9:00 PM
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Join us for the U.S. Premiere of ...fließend...

...fließend... is constructed from long, sustained notes with the goal of expressing a sense of acceleration over a long duration. This is the first time the work will be prepared and performed with the composer's presence. The concert will be followed by a discussion with the Georg Friedrich Haas, soloist Sharon Harms and Argento musicians.

Ancient Structures & Inexorable Lust

Wednesday November 2 at 8PM
Cary Hall | Dimenna Center
450 W 37th St, New York, NY 10018

Tria ex Uno (2001)
Georg Friedrich Haas/Josquin des Prez
For flute, clarinet, piano, percussion, violin, and cello

...flißend... (2019) * U.S. Premiere
Georg Friedrich Haas
For flute, clarinet, percussion, piano, two violins, viola, cello, and bass

ATTHIS (2009)
Georg Friedrich Haas/Sappho
For soprano, clarinet, bassoon, horn, two violins, viola, cello, and bass

Post-concert discussion with Georg Friedrich Haas, Sharon Harms and performers.

In his Agnus Dei II from Missa L'homme armé super voces musicales, Franco-Flemish composer Josquin dez Prez showed that a single melodic line, played at 3 different speeds, could render a complete, full-blown musical movement. Georg Friedrich Haas said “I wish I had composed the Agnus Dei myself”. Although Haas could not travel back in time to the 14th century, he did the next best thing: he composed his own musical fantasy, called Tria ex Uno, based on Josquin’s miraculous movement. Argento opens our November concert with this work, scored for instrumental sextet. 

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Performed for memory, ...flißend... creates the aural illusion of an infinite shepard-tone, through a continuous instrumental accelerando. 

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In her surviving poetry, Sappho of Lesbos (c. 630 – c. 570 BC) depicts an intense, overwhelming infatuation with a young woman named Atthis. Taking fragments from Sappho, Georg Friedrich Haas begins his 2009 composition, ATTHIS, by orchestrating the climactic emotional upheaval caused by Sappho’s all-consuming unrequited obsession. 

Haas explains "In the first part, the pain of love is so overwhelming that she loses consciousness. In the second part, I attempt the most difficult thing in contemporary music: I try to compose a happy ending. We don't have a language for this in contemporary music.... We have many ideas to compose suffering, but not to compose love." Haas realizes the sublime intoxication of love by bathing the audience in vibrating, consonant harmonies that dramatically contrast the violence of the opening movement.