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Variations on a Japanese Folk Song

By Helmut Lachenmann

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Alto saxophone, percussion, piano
Variations on a Japanese Folk Song. Composed by Helmut Lachenmann. Kammermusik-Bibliothek (Chamber Music Library). 20th Century (after 1950). Score and parts. Breitkopf and Haertel #KM-2438. Published by Breitkopf and Haertel (BR.KM-2438).

Item Number: BR.KM-2438

ISBN 979-0-004-50301-0. 9 x 12 in inches.

World premiere Cologne, February 18, 2001 - Trio Accanto

The Sakura Variations are rooted in a world of sounds that is very familiar to us. They do not represent a step backwards, but a look backwards, and are to be understood as both cheerful and serious - just as I take children seriously, along with their need to be taken seriously within their horizon. The exotic inflections of the 'sadly cheerful' Japanese folk and children's song which conjures up the connection of pure beauty and inevitable transitoriness in the symbol of the cherry blossoms, is embedded into the functional-harmonic practice of the European musical tradition. My variations escalate - albeit slightly in jest - into the pseudo-dramatic: towards the end, the music remains bound to the three beginning notes of the melody; the piano injects broad clusters, and the saxophone breaks out into an almost ecstatic improvisation - a situation that sends the music scurrying back to orderliness.
(Helmut Lachenmann) Salome Kammer (Mez) Teodoro Anzellotti (acc) SWR Sinfonieorchester Baden-Baden und Freiburg cond. Sylvain Cambreling
CD col legno WWE 2 CDs 20230
Although Sigfrid Karg-Elert has long made his way from insider's tip to widely acknowledged master his organ pieces are still considered technically demanding today.

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