with Matangi Quartet, Antjie Krog, Nicky Schrire
14:15 / Tue 1 Febr / Muziekgebouw Main Hall / € 22,50
Poetry South-Africa String Quartet + Vocal Voice
Maria-Paula Majoor (viool)
Daniel Torrico (viool)
Karsten Kleijer (altviool)
Arno van der Vuurst (cello)
Goggas of the Eastern Cape (wereldpremière)
ESCAPE: The Ingrid Jonker Suite
Trilogy celebrates three contemporary classical works by three South African composers, separated by generations but bound by a shared identity. The poetry of South African poet and author Antjie Krog is woven throughout, a thread that binds together the sounds and love of the South African landscape.
Priaulx Rainier’s (b.1903) For String Quartet was composed in 1922 and is one of the KwaZulu-Natal-born composer’s earliest works. As a result, the single movement work, often referred to as the “lost” quartet, has not enjoyed as much popularity amongst players as her 1939 String Quartet. The composition beautifully marries British, pastoral influences (a result of Rainier having studied at the Royal Academy of Music and lived most of her life in England) with her natural affinity for contemporary harmonies, rhythms, and orchestration. These modern characteristics would become more prevalent in her future works, meaning that this early work stands slightly apart from her oeuvre, allowing audiences the opportunity to marvel at Rainier’s process and progression.
Composer Amy Crankshaw (b.1991) draws inspiration from her roots for her three-movement composition Goggas of the Eastern Cape. Coincidentally, Crankshaw was awarded the 2015 Priaulx Rainier Prize for Composition, which Rainier established in 1987 and alternates between recipients at the South African College of Music and the Royal Academy of Music. The London-based composer uses various string techniques to bring to life cicadas, praying mantises, and songololos in a virtuosic and humorous work.
Escape: The Ingrid Jonker Suite is a result of Nicky Schrire’s (b.1986) love for the written word, film scores, and her admiration for an exceptional figure and truly South African icon, poet Ingrid Jonker. Jonker’s body of work, though small, continues to speak volumes decades after her death. She delicately and beautifully captured lust, love, heartbreak, anger and the fabric of everyday life in her poems. Schrire sets André Brink and Antjie Krog’s English translations of a selection of Jonker’s works to music in a world that blends folk, cinematic and art song genres. The songs are arranged for voice and string quartet, and the poems are delivered in Jonker’s mother tongue, Afrikaans, by poet Antjie Krog.
Trilogy sees the Dutch debut of all three works and the premiere of Crankshaw’s piece, which was composed specifically for the Matangi Quartet and the 2022 String Quartet Biennale Amsterdam.
Trilogy celebrates three contemporary classical works by three South African composers, separated by generations but bound by a shared identity.