Martynov Edition

Martynov Edition
Composer Vladimir Martynov
Artist Grand Children Choir named after Viktor Popov
Academy of Early Music Ensemble of the Moscow Philharmonic
Opus Posth Ensemble
The Sirin Vocal Ensemble
Tatiana Grindenko director & solo violin
Andrey Kotov director
Alexei Lubimov piano
Format 7 CD
Cat. number 96380
EAN code 5028421963808
Release October 2022

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About this release

The most comprehensive survey ever assembled on record of a major Russian composer working in the post-Soviet school of simplicity and transcendence.

Born in 1946, Vladimir Martynov is one of several composers from the former USSR whose music taps into a vein of perpetual memory and farewell. Literally so in the case of Der Abschied, an eight-movement cycle for small ensemble which stands on the threshold like a guest at a gathering of friends, unable or unwilling to shut the door behind them and venture out alone.

There are notable ancestors for this style among the Austro-German Romantics, especially Franz Schubert, but the style itself became defined by composers such as Martynov towards the end of the last century, and continues into this one, touched by an ineffable melancholy which seems to recognise an end-point for music itself, and takes comfort in the fragmentary recovery of melody and harmony from an Edenic state of Classicism.

One of Martynov’s most distinguished contemporaries was the Ukrainian composer Valentin Silvestrov, who talked of a ‘genetic aural well’ for Russian music which, like Orthodox prayer, cannot be learnt as a text, but which exists beyond any text. Silvestrov explicitly recognised his own output as ‘meta-music’ or even ‘post-music’, and the same could be said of many pieces in Martynov’s output. Tiny motifs and gestures are layered and expanded across a meditative space in a distinctively Russian form of Minimalism that bears certain similarities with the better-known outputs of Pärt and Schnittke but pursues a consciously more austere path: both the Requiem and Stabat mater are imbued with the timeless qualities of chant and ancient melisma.

Martynov’s music began to attract a certain cult following in the West during the 1990s with performances and recordings made principally by the violinist Gidon Kremer and his former partner, Tatiana Grindenko. As both both a violinist and conductor, Grindenko has continued to keep

Martynov’s flame burning, and she leads most of the performances here, which were made mostly in Moscow over the course of several years and in several cases receive here their first international release.
Released to mark Martynov’s 75th birthday, the collection is introduced by a major new essay from Alexei Lubimov (another performer who, like Grindenko, has been immersed in the composer’s output for decades) and features extensive notes on the individual works. As Lubimov concludes: ‘In the combination of his various roles as “non-composer”, scholar, creator of his own rituals, provocateur to the audience, Martynov succeeds to an astonishing degree in putting his finger on the points of pain in our time, and offers us the hope of healing through music.’

Vladimir Martynov (b. 1946) is one of the leading composers of the Russian avant-garde, an experimentalist of serial, minimalist and electronic music. His ethno-musicological studies into the folk music of Russia, his philosophical and religious ideas and his great knowledge of Renaissance polyphony as well as Orthodox Chant all inspired his compositions. His principles are: commitment to traditional rules; modality as a constant feature of musical language; and repetitiveness as a means of immersion in states of prayer, mantra, and ritual in general.
This set, compiled for his 75th birthday, presents sacred vocal works: Christmas Music, Requiem, Stabat Mater, Lamentations of Jeremiah, as well as instrumental music: Singapore, Night in Galicia, Dance with the Dead Friend (piano & orchestra), Come in! (violin & orchestra) and Der Abschied (string ensemble).
Performed by famous musicians from the composer’s close circle: pianist Alexei Lubimov, Tatiana Grindenko, the Sirin Choir, OP POSTH Ensemble, Dmitri Pokrovsky Ensemble and others.
A valuable tribute to one of the most original and moving voices of present day Russia.

Track list

Disk 1

  1. Vladimir Martynov: Christmas Music, Pt. 1, Book for Instruments: I. Prelude for the Star and the Three Knights
  2. Vladimir Martynov: Christmas Music, Pt. 1, Book for Instruments: II. Prelude for Angels and Shepherds
  3. Vladimir Martynov: Christmas Music, Pt. 1, Book for Instruments: III. Prelude for Children
  4. Vladimir Martynov: Christmas Music, Pt. 2, Book of Songs: No. 1
  5. Vladimir Martynov: Christmas Music, Pt. 2, Book of Songs: No. 2
  6. Vladimir Martynov: Christmas Music, Pt. 2, Book of Songs: No. 3
  7. Vladimir Martynov: Christmas Music, Pt. 2, Book of Songs: No. 4
  8. Vladimir Martynov: Christmas Music, Pt. 2, Book of Songs: No. 5
  9. Vladimir Martynov: Christmas Music, Pt. 2, Book of Songs: No. 6
  10. Vladimir Martynov: Christmas Music, Pt. 2, Book of Songs: No. 7
  11. Vladimir Martynov: Christmas Music, Pt. 2, Book of Songs: No. 8

Disk 2

  1. Vladimir Martynov: Night in Galicia: I. A-A-A O-O-O EH-EH-EH EE-EE-EE OO-OO-OO
  2. Vladimir Martynov: Night in Galicia: II. The Meadow’s Lowing Now is Sinking
  3. Vladimir Martynov: Night in Galicia: III. Your Lips Are the Black Grouse’s Brow
  4. Vladimir Martynov: Night in Galicia: IV. Wind, is That You?
  5. Vladimir Martynov: Night in Galicia: V. In the Gorge Where the Dog Rose Blooms
  6. Vladimir Martynov: Night in Galicia: VI. As the Future’s my Witness
  7. Vladimir Martynov: Night in Galicia: VII. Ever These Shades Draw me in!
  8. Vladimir Martynov: Night in Galicia: VIII. Like a Black Wind
  9. Vladimir Martynov: Night in Galicia: IX. From an Old Rowboat’s Transom
  10. Vladimir Martynov: Night in Galicia: X. Wind, you Hear, This Deed is Frightful!

Disk 3

  1. Vladimir Martynov: Requiem: I. Introitus
  2. Vladimir Martynov: Requiem: II. Kyrie
  3. Vladimir Martynov: Requiem: III. Offertorium
  4. Vladimir Martynov: Requiem: IV. Sanctus
  5. Vladimir Martynov: Requiem: V. Angus dei
  6. Vladimir Martynov: Requiem: VI. Lux acterna
  7. Vladimir Martynov: Stabat mater: I. Stabat mater
  8. Vladimir Martynov: Requiem: II. O quam tristis, quis est homo
  9. Vladimir Martynov: Requiem: III. Pro peccatis, ela, mater
  10. Vladimir Martynov: Requiem: IV. Virgo virginum

Disk 4

  1. Vladimir Martynov: Dance with the Dead Friend
  2. Vladimir Martynov: Come in!

Disk 5

  1. Vladimir Martynov: Lamentations of Jeremiah: I. Prologue 1
  2. Vladimir Martynov: Lamentations of Jeremiah: II. Chapter I
  3. Vladimir Martynov: Lamentations of Jeremiah: III. Prologue 2
  4. Vladimir Martynov: Lamentations of Jeremiah: IV. Chapter II
  5. Vladimir Martynov: Lamentations of Jeremiah: V. Prologue 3
  6. Vladimir Martynov: Lamentations of Jeremiah: VI. Chapter III
  7. Vladimir Martynov: Lamentations of Jeremiah: VII. Prologue 4
  8. Vladimir Martynov: Lamentations of Jeremiah: VIII. Chapter IV
  9. Vladimir Martynov: Lamentations of Jeremiah: IX. Prayer of the Prophet Jeremiah

Disk 6

  1. Vladimir Martynov: Der Abschied

Disk 7

  1. Vladimir Martynov: Singapore I
  2. Vladimir Martynov: Singapore II