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Giya Kancheli

Publisher: G. Schirmer

Magnum Ignotum (1994)
Work Notes
available in the USA, Canada and Mexico only
Hans Sikorski Russian Works
Large Ensemble (7 or more players)
Year Composed
22 Minutes
Programme Note
Giya Kancheli Magnum Ignotum (1994)
Composer note:

I am touched most by the mysterious spiritualization of the Georgian tradition of folk music. In my opinion, the masterworks of the many-voiced folk music could only have been created as a result of joint artistic effort by highly gifted people. The more I admire this unknown genius, the more I realize that I have no right to tamper with its creations. The material in Magnum Ignotum has been rendered in a very simple manner and serves only one purpose: to evoke a state of mind in which humbleness lodges itself in the soul in anticipation of divine singing. The tape consists of four parts: a chant by a high priest, an authentic recording from the thirties of a three-voiced improvisation by West Georgian greybeards, a mix of natural and artificial tone colors, and a Georgian hymn sung by the vocal ensemble Rustawi. All this music is full of that mysterious spirit that I shall never be able to grasp.

--Giya Kancheli

  • Ensemble
    Royal Flemish Philharmonic
    Djansug Kakhidze
    ECM New Series:
  • 11 OCT 2009
    Tempe, AZ
    Arizona State University
    Jason Castor, conductor

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