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'Up-close' wint muziekprijs voor Van der Aa

LOUISVILLE, Kentucky, 25 november 2012 /PRNewswire/ -- "Up-close," een muziekstuk gecomponeerd door de Nederlandse componist Michel Van der Aa dat filmmuziek mengt met concertmuziek, heeft een prijs gewonnen, te weten de 2013 University of Louisville (UofL) Grawemeyer Award for Music Composition.

Het dertig minuten durende stuk is volgens awardcoördinator Marc Satterwhite een zeer innovatieve mix van muzikale en visuele kunst.

"Het is een virtuoos celloconcert maar het is tegelijkertijd een fascinerende multimedia-ervaring die niet in één hokje kan worden gestopt", zegt Satterwhite. "Het is gewoon een geheel nieuw genre."

Van der Aa, 42, huiscomponist van het Koninklijk Concertgebouworkest in Amsterdam heeft het stuk geschreven voor de Argentijns Franse celliste Sol Gabetta en het Amsterdamse Sinfonietta. De première van het stuk, geschreven in opdracht van het European Concert Hall Organization, was in Stockholm in 2011.

De Sinfonietta en Gabetta voerden het stuk daarna op in concertgebouwen in heel Europa, met enthousiaste reacties van zowel het publiek alsook de critici. Disquiet Media, een platenmaatschappij opgericht door Van der Aa, heeft het stuk vorig jaar op DVD uitgebracht.

Het stuk wordt opgevoerd met een groot videoscherm vlakbij de solocelliste en de strijkers op het podium. Terwijl de muziek wordt gespeeld, verschijnt het beeld van een oudere vrouw op het scherm. Eerst krabbelt ze gecodeerde berichten op papier op een verlaten podium dat er net zo uit ziet als waar de muziek wordt gespeeld. Daarna rent ze door het bos naar een verlaten huis, waar ze tracht de berichten te versturen via een mechanische codeermachine.

Naarmate het stuk vordert, vervlechten het muzikale optreden en de film zich steeds meer met elkaar, tot ze een afspiegeling van elkaar zijn. De vrouw lijkt een alter ego te zijn van de celliste, maar er blijft veel onopgehelderd.

Van der Aa wordt alom gezien als een pionier op theatergebied. Veel van zijn werken bevatten live and van tevoren opgenomen elektronica, theater en film. Samen met de Engelse romanschrijver David Mitchell werkt hij op dit moment aan een occulte mysterieuze filmopera in 3D getiteld "Sunken Garden", waarvoor de première gepland staat in april in Londen.

Boosey en Hawkes, een wereldwijde uitgever van klassieke muziek met kantoren in New York, Londen en Berlijn, geeft zijn muziek uit.

UofL presenteert ieder jaar vier Grawemeyer Awards voor uitmuntend gecomponeerde muziekstukken, uitstekend werk op het gebied van de wereldorde, psychologie en scholing. De universiteit en het Presbyteriaanse Theologische Seminarie van Louisville geven samen ook nog een vijfde award weg op religieus gebied. De awards zijn dit jaar ieder 100.000 USD.

Voor meer informatie over de awards of voor het downloaden van een foto van Van der Aa, kijk op www.grawemeyer.org. Voor een fragment van het winnende stuk, ga naar www.vanderaa.net/up-close of www.boosey.com/podcast/Michel-van-der-Aa-Up-close-DVD/13199

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