Ligeti Space Interpretation
György Ligeti, Den Haag, February 1991. Photo: Co Broerse
In May 2023, the composer György Ligeti would have turned 100. In close temporal and spatial proximity to concerts of Ligeti's works at the Berlin Philharmonie, a symposium at the Staatliches Institut für Musikforschung (SIM) will address two key topics in Ligeti's work: "space" and "interpretation."
Up to now, musicological research into Ligeti has for the most part focused on space as an imaginary sound space and on interpretation - or rather playing processes - as the "material" of composition. It has rarely dealt with the performative dimensions of space and interpretation. This symposium aims to broaden the usual perspective on these topics.
In what way did Ligeti use real spatial arrangements compositionally? What role do imaginary sound or tonal spaces, spatially associated formal arrangements, and historical and geographical spaces play in the interpretation and analysis of his works?
Who were Ligeti's interpreters, how was his relationship to them? Did he follow specific performance aesthetics, not least with regard to the notoriously precarious relationship between textual accuracy and expressivity? What can we say about the extensive history of interpretation of his works, which now spans many decades?
The symposium will be accompanied by two master classes with renowned Ligeti performers: A great opportunity to gain firsthand insight into the interpretation of the works and to experience the reaction of today's young interpreters.
From February 9 to May 31, the exhibition "György Ligeti at 100”, curated by SIM and the Paul Sacher Foundation Basel, will be on display in the foyer of the Philharmonie Berlin, featuring little-known photos and documents. The exhibition can be viewed when attending a concert there and during the Philharmonie's opening hours.