Thursday 16 September 2021, 7.30pm

"Furia / Grand Duet": Karolina Öhman (Cello) & Tamriko Kordzaia (Piano) perform Leos Janáček, Dieter Ammann, Peter Conradin Zumthor, Sam Hayden & Galina Ustvolskaya

No Longer Available

Cellist Karolina Öhman and Pianist Tamriko Kordzaia, both members of the internationally renowned Mondrian Ensemble, join their considerable musical forces in a unique duo programme entitled ‘Furia (‘Fury) Grand Duet‘.

The theme of the programme encompasses compositions which, in different ways, project highly energetic sonic fields, both metaphorically and actually, exposing a tangible physicality, not only in the sense of classic virtuosity but also in terms of sound intensity, severity and vehemence!From this perspective, the only calm moment in this program is Janáček’s ‘Pohádka’ but this calm is also deceptive. 

The centrepiece of the programme will be a new work by Sam Hayden for Piano and Cello, specially commissioned for the project.

The project is generously supported by RVW Trust, Pro Helvetia Swiss Arts Council, Swiss Performers Foundation - SIS.


Leos Janáček (CZ,1854–1928) – Pohádka(1910) for Cello and Piano

Dieter Ammann (CH,*1962) - Piece For Cello (1994/98) (Imagination Against Numbers) 

Peter Conradin Zumthor (CH,*1979) – Fifteen Minutes (2020) ) for Piano Solo

Sam Hayden (UK, *1968) – remnants III (2020-21) for Cello and Piano (WP) 

Galina Ustvolskaya (RUS, 1919–2006) - Grand Duet(1959) for Cello and Piano

Tamriko Kordzaia

Georgian-Swiss pianist Tamriko Kordzaia became renowned in her native Georgia as an interpreter of Mozart and Haydn. After moving to Switzerland, she continued in this field, but became more and more engaged in new music, especially in the works of the younger generations of composers. She has received numerous national and international awards, including the first prize and the prize for Mozart interpretation at the International Sakai Competition in Osaka and the culture award of the City of Winterthur. She has been a member of the Mondrian Ensemble in Zurich since 2008 while constantly touring the world for concerts. She premiered pieces by Klaus Lang, Jürg Frey, David Dramm, Felix Profos, Roland Moser, Mikheil Shugliashvil and others and released CDs on Edition Wandelweiser, NEOS, WERGO, A Tree in a Field Records and Guild; In 2020 Col Legno released a CD with music by the Austrian composer Thomas Wally and on the Berlin label Tochnit Aleph the solo piece "Experience of Limits" by Antoine Chessex was published on vinyl. Since 2005 Tamriko Kordzaia is artistic director of the Georgian-Swiss festival for current music »Close Encounters«. Tamriko Kordzaia is piano professor at the Zurich University of the Arts.

Karolina Öhman

The Swedish cellist Karolina Öhman performs internationally with a diverse repertoire. Tours and festival appearances have taken Karolina to numerous countries across Europe and Asia. She is especially committed to the performance of contemporary music, and has premiered over 100 solo, chamber music and ensemble works.

Karolina has appeared as a soloist with the Basel Symphony Orchestra, Camerata Zurich, Kammerphilharmonie Graubünden and Basel Sinfonietta among others. Being a devoted chamber musician, she performs in several ensembles: in 2008 she founded the cello-percussion duo UmeDuo with her sister Erika Öhman, and since 2014 Karolina has been a member of Mondrian Ensemble, which was awarded the Swiss Music Prize in 2018. In 2016 she became the principal cellist of the Kammerphilharmonie Graubünden.

Karolina studied with Torleif Thedéen, Thomas Demenga and Thomas Grossenbacher and graduated with a soloist diploma from the Zurich University of the Arts. After completing her studies she won several awards, including the 1st prize at the prestigious Concours Nicati for contemporary music. In addition, she received scholarships from foundations such as Pierino Ambrosoli Foundation and Ernst Göhner Stiftung, and became a beneficiary of the Concert Promotion Migros in Zürich.

Sam Hayden

This composition is the third piece in Hayden’s ‘remnants’ series (the others being for solo contrabass clarinet and solo bass trombone respectively, where low sonorities are an obvious feature in common).remnants IIIcontinues the trend of Hayden’s recent work combining’ spectral’ traditions with algorithmic approaches to composition, using IRCAM’s OpenMusic to generate some of the microtonal pitch structures, metrical partitions and complex rhythmical subdivisions. There is an unstable continuum between the computer-generated scales and quasi-spectral harmonic fields which is constantly evolving. The piece oscillates between dense, energetic polyphonic textures and moments of relative clarity and stillness in a paradoxical form which Hayden conceives as both cyclical and without repetition: similar music is stretched and compressed over and over again, recognisable but different every time. It is unclear whether the cello and piano are in opposition or acting as a single sonic entity, a relationship that is also in a continuous state of flux, especially given that the cello part is microtonal whereas the piano is in conventional 12TET. The computer-generated aspects of the piece were starting points, ‘found objects’ which became largely overwritten during the later, more intuitive stages of Hayden’s compositional process. Nevertheless, ‘remnants’ of these computer-generated elements remain on the surface of the music, perhaps akin to obscure archeological artefacts whose original functions are now mysterious.

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