Outcast (CD)

String Quartets - Silvestrov 1, Schnittke 3, Shostakovich 8 Matangi Quartet

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Alfred Schnittke - String Quartet No. 3
Valentin Silvestrov - String Quartet No. 1

Dmitri Shostakovich - String Quartet No. 8

With their album 'Outcast', Matangi makes its case for artistic freedom and for musical expressiveness that stems from repression. The combination of these three compositions on one CD ensures that 'silent' resistance is given its voice.

Composers are not always free to compose what they want. This album is an ode to the musical 'outcast': three Soviet-Russian composers who wrote music that went dangerously against the taste of the regime under which they lived. Described as 'avant-garde' or 'western', they stuck their necks out for their work, risking their careers or - in the case of Dmitri Shostakovich under Stalin - even their personal freedom. Shostakovich always had a packed suitcase ready for the eventuality of his arrest by the KGB. Alfred Schnittke was also severely thwarted by his own government. His work was viewed with suspicion and performances were regularly prevented. In addition to his musical oeuvre, the Ukrainian composer Valentin Silvestrov is known for his political opposition to the rulers of the former Soviet Union and present-day Russia. The Matangi Quartet is an ardent advocate of Silvestrov's music and has developed a special personal and musical bond with him. In 2017 he was Artist in Residence of Matangi's own (Un)heard Music Festival.

Recording date July 2021 - Mol (Belgium), Galaxy Studio
Recorded by - Bert van der Wolf
Label - Matangi Music / Pias