Posted By : JArmstrong
Piece Title : Fertility Rites
No. of times Viewed (January 2019) :23
Total No. of times Viewed :2048
No. of Media Uploads :0(Videos -0, MP3 - 0, Photos - 0)
Dificulty Rating :
Level : Senior / Graduate
Composer / Arranger : Hatzis, Christos
Composer / Arranger Details:

With a large number of presentations of his music in Canada, USA, Europe, and elsewhere every year, a continuous stream of commissions by an international list of soloists and ensembles and several recording projects by major and independent labels, 2008 and 2006 Juno Award winner Christos Hatzis “is currently enjoying a growing international reputation as one of the most important composers writing today" (CBC Records). A professor of composition at the Faculty of Music, University of Toronto, Christos Hatzis is the recipient of several national and international distinctions such as the 2008 Jan V. Matejcek Concert Music Award (SOCAN) given each year to the most performed Canadian composer, the Jean A. Chalmers National Music Award, the Prix Italia Special Prize, the Prix Bohemia Radio, the Jules Léger Prize for chamber music and the New Pioneer Award as well as four Juno Award nominations (2003, 2004, 2006 and 2008) in addition to his 2008 and 2006 Juno Awards in the “Classical Composition of the Year” category. Compact disc recordings of his works are available on EMI Classics, Sony Classical, Analekta, Naxos, CBC Records, Marquis, CMC, Cherry Red Records and Consipio, quite a few of them consisting exclusively of his music.

In the past few seasons, Hatzis’ compositions have been receiving international exposure through performances by touring ensembles committed to Hatzis` music, such as the Gryphon Trio, the Afiara, Pacifica, Penderecki and St. Lawrence string quartets, CityMusic Cleveland, the Tafelmusik Baroque Orchestra and Chamber Choir, the Elmer Iseler Singers, and soloists such as violinist Hilary Hahn and Angèle Dubeau, pianist Valentina Lisitsa, flutists Patrick Gallois and Susan Hoeppner, sopranos Suzie Leblanc, Patricia Rozario, Isabel Bayrakdarian, and Patricia O’ Callaghan, Arabic vocalist Maryem Hassan-Tollar, violist Steven Dann, French horn player Jamie Sommerville, cellist Shauna Rolston, percussionists Dame Evelyn Glennie (UK), Beverley Johnston, NEXUS and TorQ (Canada) and Gordon Stout (USA), to mention but a few. Premieres of his music from 2003 to 10 include venues such as The Royal Opera House at Convent Garden, St. Paul`s Cathedral, The Barbican Center and the Queen Elizabeth Hall in London, UK, The Lincoln Center and the Metropolitan Museum of Art in New York City, the Walt Disney Center for the Performing Arts in Los Angeles, the Konzerthaus in Berlin, the Lively Arts Center in Palo Alto, CA, the Megaron halls in Athens and Thessaloniki, Greece, The Beijing Central Conservatory of Music and the Roy Thompson Hall in Toronto and festivals like the High Lights Festival in Montreal and the Luminato Festival in Toronto.

Current and recent projects include Coming To, for violin and piano which is currently touring by internationally renowned violinist Hilary Hahn and pianist Valentina Lisitsa; Credo for folk/pop singer George Dalaras, Greece`s best known musician, which premiered at Avery Fisher Hall in New York`s Lincoln Center on November 12, 2010 as part of a Hatzis/Dalaras concert; a Hatzis concert with Tafelmusik and soloists at the Royal Ontario Museum celebrating ROM`s  Dead Sea Scrolls Exhibit in October 2009; Arabesque for solo violin and chamber orchestra which toured Canada and the USA in 2009-10 with Angèle Dubeau and La Pièta ensemble; Redemption: Book 1, a concerto for the Pacifica Quartet and CityMusic Cleveland; Mirage?, for vibraphone and string orchestra for Dame Evelyn Glennie and the Manitoba Chamber Orchestra which toured in 2009 and will tour again in 2012 in Europe and the Far East; Four Songs on Poems by Elizabeth Bishop, for soprano Suzie Leblanc and Symphony Nova Scotia (2011); Departures: Concerto for Flute and Chamber Orchestra, which premiered in August 2011 with Susan Hoeppner and the Kyoto Symphony Orchestra as part of the 2011 Japan Flute Convention, followed by its European premiere in September 2011 with Patrick Gallois and the Thessaloniki State Orchestra. Both soloists are planning recordings of the concerto to be released in 2012-13. During the past few years, several printed editions of Hatzis` music have seen the light of day in the past few years. The 2012-13 season will be the Hatzis@60 anniversary season. Several large-scale performances and a few all-Hatzis concerts will take place around the world during that season.

It is not unusual for a Hatzis work to become a signature piece for a soloist or an ensemble. His Old Photographs and Dance of the Dictators have been performed by the Gryphon Trio all over the world hundreds of times. The Camerata Orchestra of Athens under the direction of Alexander Myrat performed a Hatzis work in each season during the past few years. During the 2011-12 season, the Thessaloniki State Orchestra has programmed three Hatzis orchestral works with more to follow the following season. His choral symphony, Sepulcher of Life, was commissioned by four different Canadian philharmonic choirs and already has had nine performances across North America and Europe by nine different presenters, including a remarkable performance at the Temple of Dendur, in the Metropolitan Museum of Art in New York City in May 2004. Hatzis` music is increasingly combined with visual media: His most important multimedia music theatre piece, Constantinople, performed at sold-out halls at Banff and Toronto during the summer and fall of 2004 and was described by the Toronto Star as “A multimedia feast of the imagination...a work unlike any other in the Canadian musical literature …Constantinople defies categories...it is in a class of its own” and by the Calgary Herald as “a stunning theatrical triumph”. In June 2005 Constantinople opened the International Festival of Arts and Ideas in New Heaven, Connecticut, and in 2007 it had several prestigious international performances including five completely sold-out shows at the Royal Opera House, Covent Garden followed by sold-out performances in Calgary and Whitehorse in 2008. A new tour is in the works for the 2012-13 season. Besides performances and broadcasts, listeners can hear Hatzis music on the internet. His ReverbNation audio flash player with samples of his work registered over one million hits in its first ten months on the internet.

Hatzis` music is inspired by early Christian spirituality, Pythagorean and Hermetic ideas, his own Byzantine music heritage, world cultures and various non-classical music genres such as jazz, pop and world musics. He is an advocate of borderless culture and many of his most recent works bridge the gap between classical music and today’s popular music idioms, His compositions are structurally complex while sonically accessible. He has created several works inspired by the music of the Inuit, Canada`s arctic inhabitants, and his Inuit-inspired works, particularly the award winning radio documentary Footprints in New Snow, have promoted Inuit culture around the globe. His strongest inspiration is his own religious faith, and his religious works have been hailed by critics and audiences alike as contemporary masterpieces. In addition to composing and teaching, Hatzis has written extensively about composition and contemporary music. His writings have been published on Interface, Organized Sound and Harmony, and are increasingly translated into other languages. Most of Hatzis` writings and other information about the composer are available at www.hatzis.com. He is currently working on a autobiography titled Awakening through Music. Christos Hatzis’ music is published by Promethean Editions, based in Wellington, New Zealand.

Total Number of Percussionists Required :1 Percussionist(s)
Categories : Tuned Percussion
Instrument / Discipline : 5 Octave Marimba
Instrumentation : N/A
Range of Instruments / Number of Drums : 5 Octave Marimba
Written for / Commissioned by : Beverley Johnston
Permission given for Youtube video by Copyright holder
and Youtube Channel Owner. Recorded / Provided by:
 With thanks to Andrew Dunsmore
Accompanied :Solo with CD Accompaniment
Publisher :Promethean Editions
Publishers Website :www.promethean-editions.com/
Publisher Details :

A Greek legend tells how the demigod Prometheus stole fire from the Gods and brought it to mankind in order that they might establish civilisation. Subsequently Zeus took vengeance on Prometheus for his cunning, condemning him to be bound in chains for eternity and sending an eagle to feed upon his immortal liver!

Promethean Editions was established in 1996 with the mission of bringing the fire of new, fresh and exciting contemporary music to performers and audiences throughout the world. Today we publish, promote and market music by emerging and established composers in the global market-place.

We publish and represent the music of thirty composers and work closely with our house composers: Gareth Farr, Christos Hatzis, Vincent Ho and John Psathas.

Key strategies include the publication of sheet music and services to composers (management, music typesetting and administration of music hire and facsimile score publication).

Promethean Editions are intended primarily for performance. Scores and parts are sturdy and easy to use: durable outside, clearly and sensibly laid out within.

Music is engraved using either Music Press (Graphire) or Finale (MakeMusic!). Music Press is a high-end expert music typesetting software package whose output is comparable to the finest classical hand engraving, and custom fonts and spacing are employed in Finale to achieve clean and stylish scores.

Gareth Farr and John Psathas are two important New Zealand composers. Together with Canadians Christos Hatzis and Vincent Ho they form part of an emerging unique artistic voice. Gareth Farr is renowned for his colourful melodies and driving, percussive writing, while referencing musical styles of the Pacific-rim, including Cook Island drumming, Balinese Gamelan and Maori music traditions. Christos Hatzis, a Greek born Canadian resident, draws musical inspiration from Christian spirituality, his own Byzantine heritage and other cultures. His music is eclectic and combines elements of jazz, pop and world music, including several earlier works inspired by the music of the Inuit, Canada’s arctic inhabitants. Canadian Vincent Ho’s music is rich and energetic, a unique integration of influences ranging from the visual arts, electroacoustic and natural soundscapes, traditional classical music forms, and the physical properties of the instruments and ensembles for which he writes. Ho is currently Composer in Residence with the Winnipeg Symphony Orchestra. New Zealand born Greek John Psathas was recognised early in his career for writing high-energy and propulsive music. He continues to fuse a new classical style by drawing from his heritage and aspects of European art music, jazz and rock.

Year Composed / Copyright Date :1997 /  1997
Duration :13Minutes
No. of Mallets/Sticks Required :4
Special Needs :5-octave marimba and audio playback (CD). In larger halls, amplifying the marimba may be necessary.
Sheet Music Available From :www.promethean-editions.com/php/WorkDetail1.php?WorkID=242&Composer=Christos Hatzis&ComposerID=24      Check to see if in stock
Programme Notes / Performance Details :

"Fertility Rites for five-octave marimba and tape is part of a series of works all written in the 1990-ies. The connecting thread that runs through all of these works is Inuit throat singing. My fascination with the Inuit and their culture started in 1992 during the course of creating a radio documentary/composition for CBC Radio called The Idea of Canada. That was the first time I heard this strange and haunting music. A few years later I got myself involved in a similar project this time focusing entirely on Inuit culture and throat singing in particular. This latter project took CBC producer Keith Horner and me to Baffin Island in arctic Canada where we spent two weeks recording throat singers and interviewing elders of the Inuit communities in Iqaluit and Cape Dorset. The recorded material was eventually used in four compositions (including this one) the other three being Footprints in New Snow, a thirty-eight minute radio documentary/composition, Nunavut for string quartet and tape and Hunters Dream, an one-minute miniature commissioned by rock keyboardist Morgan Fisher for a compact disc of miniatures he was producing at the time in Japan.

The title of the work derives from the throat songs themselves. In one of our interviews in Iqaluit Keith and I learned that throat songs were originally a fertility ritual, a shamanistic mating call which the women performed while the men were out hunting. The katajjaq (vocal games) in this piece are used to evoke this primordial practice. Their sexual suggestiveness is further enhanced by electronic processing (lowering the pitch by an octave or more transforms the original sound into a semblance of heavy breathing), or through juxtaposing the katajjaq against other types of amorous music stylistically more familiar to the listener, such as the French-sounding second movement or the tango-like music of the third. In addition to the katajjaq samples, the tape part consists of prerecorded marimba sounds (normal, bent and bowed) which both in terms of timbre and musical treatment represent a virtual extension of the instruments abilities. In a programmatic sense they represent the performers thoughts or instincts in contrast to the instrument on stage which represents the performers voice. Sometimes what is being felt and what is being said are diametrically opposed, like in the first movement where the gentle, non-possessive music for the marimba and the dark, longing calls on the tape contradict each other. But in the end both inner and outer worlds merge into uninhibited abandon and celebration of sexuality and life."

-Christos Hatzis

This is a fantastic piece in three movements with a very interesting and intriguing CD accompaniment.The first two movements are slower, though still having their own difficulties with sustained rolls, and a few polyrhythms between the hands. The last movement is more technically demanding as well as rhythmically. There are some polyrhythms between the CD and the player that would take some looking over to figure out. The marimba part offers many of the cues from the CD accompaniment, but a full score is included as well for the performers benefit.

This is an excellent piece that would go great on a senior or graduate student recital.

For more details about Christos Hatzis please visit www.hatzis.com

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