Ukrainian Contemporary Music Festival: VIRKO BALEY AT 85


Famed Ukrainian-American composer Virko Baley celebrates his 85th birthday with the Ukrainian Contemporary Music Festival. Baley, one of the most eminent Ukrainian composers to settle in the West, is a Distinguished Professor of Composition at the University of Nevada, Las Vegas and a Grammy-winning record producer. He has earned an Academy Award from the American Academy of Arts and Letters, citing him for music that is “dramatically expansive of gesture, elegant and refined of detail and profoundly lyrical.”

This evening features the world premiere of his Soliloquies & A Dialogue for flute (Anastasia Petanova) and piano (Timothy Holt), plus selections from Dreamtime for flute, clarinet, violin, cello, piano, and percussion; two movements from his evocative Nocturnals for solo piano; and Postludium: Tren, heard in its NY premiere. The heart of the program is Treny IV for two cellos and soprano, the culmination of a stirring four-movement work Baley wrote in response to the losses of his mother and two close friends, to a text by Polish Renaissance poet Jan Kochanowki. Baley calls it “the work’s emotional epicenter and its final resolution…I think what I am after is capturing some kind of internal truth (with a small ‘t’).” Treny IV will be sung by soprano Olga Pasichnyk.