"Jauna muzika": 10th Anniversary Celebration

They say that a festival becomes an integral and solid institution once it has scaled its first decade. The "Jauna muzika" festival has now reached this perimeter, but is becoming increasingly further removed from the image of a 'solid' event. Acting as a tribune for the works of a younger generation of composers since its inception in 1992, the festival is currently providing a field for the 'discharge' of the latest in electronic and electro-acoustic music.

Bearing an e-music subheading for the second year in a row, the "Jauna muzika" festival, which takes place in Vilnius during April 9-16, offers a program of 8 concerts, half of which are dedicated to festival guests from Russia, Austria, Finland and Sweden.

Two of the festival programs are being presented by international recording companies. Electroshock Records introduces Russian composers' latest trends in electronic music. Mego Label – one of the foremost electronic music companies not only in Austria, but worldwide – emerges via Susanna Niedermayr's curated project. This latter concert includes performances by Pita and Pure, along with music videos from Mego.

Nordic e-music falls under a separate festival theme this year. Petri Kuljuntausta and Juhani Liimatainen from Finland, have created an electronic project called "The Mystery of Auroral Sounds". How does the cosmos sound like? What sort of noise do the northern lights make? An attempt to answer these and other queries utilizes Unto Laine's unique recordings of the northern lights, as well as recorded sounds which were born light-years away.

Two of the concerts are being presented by Swedish musicians. The first features performances of Swedish music by the Gotland Wind Quintet. The latter will join the saxophonist Jörgen Pettersson for the second concert, entitled eSax, which, among the Swedish electro-acoustic pieces, includes the world premiere of Antanas Kučinskas' Arabesque. This piece was commissioned by Swedish Rikskonserter, and realized at Studio Alpha at the Visby International Center for Composers.

Other premieres of Lithuanian electronic and electro-acoustic music will be presented during two eLit concerts, and in the form of an original eCello project initiated by cellist Mindaugas Bačkus. The latter offers well-known works for cello and electronics by Michael Gordon and Carl Vine, as well as Lithuanian music – a new version of Algirdas Martinaitis' Birds of Eden, as well as works written especially for the festival by Gintaras Sodeika and the Lithuanian-Italian Luca Pavan.

The Lithuanian program which makes up the two eLit concerts seem to delineate two strains of Lithuanian ars electronica: the academically-oriented composers (Mažulis, Nakas, Barkauskas Jr., Jurgutis, Germanavičius, Kuprevičius, Dikčius) and experimental sound artists (Čiuta, Narušis, Jasenka).

The second installment of "Jauna muzika: e-muzika" will also make one step further towards the electronic club music with, among others, a performance of the Sutartinės Party at the Café Jazz&Rock, which includes part of the project, originally commissioned for this year's MaerzMusik festival and carried out in cooperation between Linas Rimša, Linas Paulauskis and sutartinės singers' group "Trys keturiose".

© Eglė Gudžinskaitė

Lithuanian Music Link No. 6