Vaclovas Paketūras

The term "folkloristic romanticism" would perhaps be the most appropriate definition of Vaclovas Paketūras' (b. 1928) musical idiom. His oeuvre numbers roughly 170 solo and choral songs, nearly half of them are elaborations of Lithuanian folk songs. As a rule, he harmonizes the originally monophonic folk tunes by adding functional or modal harmonies which combine to form a whole made of symmetric musical units, and based on a well-considered, predictable logic of formal development. The latter is most often modelled on the classical examples: such genres as song, sonata, rondo-sonata, variations and the like. The standard choice of instruments - Lithuanian folk instruments birbynė (one-reed or double-reed wind instrument), skudučiai (panpipes) and kanklės (box zither) - attests to his all-embracing proclivity to folk music. He wrote conventional concert music for these instruments as well (for example, Concerto for kanklės and folk orchestra).

Five pieces. Little Scherzo

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Five pieces. Little Scherzo

Variations for viola and piano

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Variations for viola and piano

When Gardens Turn White

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When Gardens Turn White

Concerto for cello and symphony orchestra

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Concerto for cello and symphony orchestra

Biography

Vaclovas Paketūras (b. 1928) graduated from the Lithuanian State Conservatory (present Academy of Music and Theatre), the class of composition under Eduardas Balsys, in 1958. During the years of latter studies he taught at the Vilnius Seven-year Music School for Children (present Balys Dvarionas Music School for Children). From 1955 to 1959 he also taught the basics of music theory, harmony, solfeggio, and composition at the Juozas Tallat-Kelpša Music School in Vilnius (present Vilnius Conservatory). Since 1958 he has been teaching music theory at the Lithuanian Academy of Music where he became an Associate Professor in 1973, and subsequently Professor in 1986. From 1966 to 1971 he was the executive secretary of the Board of the Lithuanian Composers' Union. In 1978 Vaclovas Paketūras was bestowed a title of the merited artistic worker of the LSSR. Among his publications are 16 books ("Exercises in Harmony", "Free Voiceleading", "The Basics of Music Theory", etc.), 220 musical works and 55 articles.

Vaclovas Paketūras is a co-editor and collaborator with the Encyclopedia of Music, contributing altogether 160 articles. Since 1998 he has been collaborating in preparation of the Universal Encyclopedia.

The term "folkloristic romanticism" would perhaps be the most appropriate definition of Vaclovas Paketūras' musical idiom. It is Lithuanian folklore - folk songs or, more specifically, their melodies and rhythms - from which he draws inspiration as well as compositional material. His oeuvre numbers roughly 170 solo and choral songs, nearly half of them are elaborations of Lithuanian folk songs. As a rule, he harmonizes the originally monophonic folk tunes by adding functional or modal harmonies which combine to form a whole made of symmetric musical units, and based on a well-considered, predictable logic of formal development. The latter is most often modelled on the classical examples: such genres as song, sonata, rondo-sonata, variations and the like seem to predominate his output. Various transformations of Lithuanian folklore pervade both his large-scale works (for example, "Let's Rebel, All the Weary!" for choir and orchestra and "Sigutė", a symphonic poem based on Lithuanian fairy tale) and chamber compositions (Variations for accordion, Stomper Dance, Lithuanian Scherzo).

The standard choice of instruments - birbynė (one-reed or double-reed wind instrument), skudučiai (panpipes) and kanklės (box zither) - attests to his all-embracing proclivity to folk music. He wrote conventional concert music for these instruments as well (for example, Concerto for kanklės and folk orchestra). In recent years his music seem to undergo quantitative and qualitative change: he writes less music, but his compositions display an increasing tendency towards polyphonization of musical textures (Preludes and Fugues I, II for kanklės solo, Preludes and Fugues for kanklės duo).

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