PREMIER 3 / Works by Zoltán Jeney


Chinese Temple – for orchestra – world premiere
Alef – Hommage à Schönberg (new version) – world premiere

Conductor: ZoltánRácz

“The word that immediately springs to my mind when thinking about him is: master.” This is how, in 2013, Zoltán Kocsis initiated his speech lauding the then 70-year-old Zoltán Jeney, and the half a decade that has passed since then only serves to reinforce the reputation of this most excellent composer. This concert of his works brings together the Zoltán Jeney of the present and the early 1970s, since Alef, reminiscent of the middle part (Farben) of Schönberg’s Five Pieces for Orchestra, first appeared before an audience, not to mention some uncomprehending, even angry critics, in 1972. The brilliant György Kroó, however, was perceptive in his characterization of the composition even then: “the work no longer raises the question, from where to where, but it undertakes aquatic life with its apparently constant surface with internal vibrations.” Since then, Alef (officially condemned, even sanctioned because of its ‘oriental influences’) has long won its rightful place among the most enduring compositions from Hungary in the past decades, while this performance is a new, reorchestrated version. The concert’s other premiere is similarly a new version: Chinese Temple – for orchestra written in honour of the 60th birthday of László Vidovszky but never presented, until now. Zoltán Rácz, an artist totally at home with contemporary music, heads the orchestra.