Karl Amadeus Hartmann goes to Kiev

In cooperation with the Ukrainian State Orchestra Kyiv Kamerata, the Goehte Institute Ukraine, the Kiev Summer Music Festival, the Composers’ Association Ukraine and the Karl Amadeus Hartmann-Gesellschaft e.V., a concert with works by Karl Amadeus Hartmann and Wolfgang Rihm will take place on June 4, 2015 in the concert hall of the Academy of Sciences in Kiev (Ukraine).

Together with the chief conductor and artistic director of Kyiv Kamerata Valeriy Matyukhin, the conductor and director of the Karl Amadeus Hartmann-Gesellschaft e.V. Andreas Hérm Baumgartner – on whose initiative the project came into being – will conduct this concert, which is special in every respect: an act of solidarity, a sign of solidarity in an existentially threatening political situation in which Hartmann’s music with its message of humanism cannot be missing. In an accompanying introductory event with the theme “Klänge des Friedens” [“Sounds of peace”] the question of what music can do, what should music and art be able to achieve, will be explored.

Current development, conflict and peace research also deals with this topic. Especially with composers like Hartmann, who have a sensibility for socio-political grievances, who use seismographic antennas to perceive developments that are not yet obvious, track down their potentially fatal dynamics and deal with them in their art. Research speaks of the ability of “early warning”. Years before 1933, Hartmann had already warned in every possible way of the danger of National Socialism for society, humanity and humanism.

In each work he dealt with this in a different way, invoking resistance in alliances between cultures, religions and peoples; he pointed out alternatives, drew a different world view. It is also astonishing that in his last work – the “vocal scene” for baritone and orchestra – he once again demonstrated the ability of “early warning”: assimilating texts by Jean Giraudoux, he conveys an apocalyptic vision of the end of a civilization drawn into by a spiral of death. The initial dynamic of progress does not only turn into regression, but into decline, into the “evil of the great empires, the deadly evil”. Downfall of the banking world, social structures, nuclear catastrophe and the deadliest evil: that even the “Seelenschatz” [“Treasure of soul”] is lost. An unfortunately all too topical subject.

Wolfgang Rihm: nature morte – still alive

Karl Amadeus Hartmann:
Concerto funebre
4th Symphony

Katya Suglobina, Violin
Kyiv Kamerata
Direction: Valeriy Matyukhin, Andreas Hérm Baumgartner