Valentinas Bagdonas

A prolific composer Valentinas Bagdonas has composed over 800 works of various genres. He was the first Lithuanian composer to write concertos for English horn, Lithuanian folk instrument birbynė, and trumpet. Music for children makes a significant part of his output (about 100 vocal, and over 150 instrumental works, sonatas, cycles for piano, accordion, flute, and other instruments). He has also written numerous works for folk instrument ensembles and orchestras. His melodious and lyrical, and sometimes grotesque compositions are marked by national flavour.

Watercolour for piano

Concertino for viola and piano

Concerto for english horn and orchestra

Amber Sonatina for piano

Biography

Valentinas Bagdonas (1929-2009) began to study composition with Vytautas Klova at the Juozas Gruodis Music School in Kaunas in 1953. In 1956-65 he continued his studies with Prof. Antanas Račiūnas at the State Conservatoire (currently Lithuanian Academy of Music). In 1957-67 Valentinas Bagdonas taught at the School of Cultural Education in Vilnius. In 1967-97 (intermittently) he taught theoretical subjects at the M. K. Čiurlionis Gymnasium of Arts. In 1969-71 he served as a consultant at the Lithuanian Composers' Union, in 1971-79 was the Union's executive secretary, and in 1979-84 vice-chairman. The composer was also active as publicist: took part in various radio and TV programs, wrote about Lithuanian music (over 70 publications). In his articles he dealt primarily with the problems of music for children. Valentinas Bagdonas worked at the Memorial Museum of the singer Beatričė Grincevičiūtė.

Valentinas Bagdonas' compositions were performed in the former Soviet Union and other countries of the East Block (Czech Republic, Estonia, Poland, Russia, the Ukraine, Uzbekistan, Hungary), also in Japan, the USA, the Netherlands, Finland, and Germany. The composer participated in the "Musical Autumn" festivals, was one of the initiators and organisers of the children song competition "Dainų dainelė". Valentinas Bagdonas was awarded 13 prizes in Lithuania for his vocal and instrumental compositions.

A prolific composer Valentinas Bagdonas has composed over 800 works of various genres. He was the first Lithuanian composer to write concertos for English horn, Lithuanian folk instrument birbynė, and trumpet. Music for children makes a significant part of his output (about 100 vocal, and over 150 instrumental works, sonatas, cycles for piano, accordion, flute, and other instruments). He has also written numerous works for folk instrument ensembles and orchestras. His melodious and lyrical, and sometimes grotesque compositions are marked by national flavour. According to the composer, his style has changed around 1970 with the Sonata for violin and viola No.1, when he has abandoned stylistic diversity and sonoristic experiments in favour of more consistent and diatonic style.