Four Duets BWV 802 - 805
Six Moments musicaux D 780 No. 6 Plaintes d'un troubadour in A flat major
Serynade for piano
A Berliner Festspiele/Musikfest Berlin event
In Serynade, the piano piece Helmut Lachenmann composed between 1997 and 2000, he traces new sounds the instrument can produce, how they might emerge through differentiated touch techniques or a new way of using the pedals. The wordplay in the title of the approximately 30-minute composition alludes to the first letter of the first name of Lachenmann’s wife, Japanese pianist Yukiko Sugawara.
This title, however, also places the composition in a series of piano works by other composers, who took up the tradition of the serenade as a form of sophisticated 18th century entertainment music and sublimated it into subtle musical character portraits. English pianist Nicolas Hodges’ repertoire has included Lachenmann’s Serynade for over a decade now, and his interpretation has received high praise, not least from the composer himself.
In the first part of his piano evening, Hodges presents Zwei Linien, a piece that Wolfgang Rihm spent 13 years on as a kind of “work in progress”. The title of the composition reflects Rihm’s focus on the two-part piano works of Johann Sebastian Bach such as the Inventions or Duetti. Rihm used Bach’s music as a starting point for his own creative work, and Hodges highlights this by opening the recital with Bach’s 4 Duetti BWV 802-805.