Michael Kaulkin

Misterium Tremendum

InstrumentationMedium Orchestra (2,2,2,2 4,3,3,1 hp 2perc strings)
Length13 minutes
DifficultyPretty difficult, but it was done beautifully by the San Francisco Conservatory Orchestra.
CommentsIn Misterium Tremendum the listener is pulled on a journey through space and time, from nearly imperceptible lows to earth-shattering highs. Chromatic, atmospheric and aggressive gestures are contrasted with lyrical passages and moments of soaring exhilaration.

"...a neatly constructed work, never dull or excessive. Kaulkin...used the full orchestra with good clarity and variety of sound." --San Francisco Classical Voice

The emotional subtext of the piece draws on the awe one feels when contemplating the scope of the universe or the history of time. For some this is a feeling of joy or exhilaration, and for others perhaps, dread. This piece explores those conflicting emotions.

Please visit http://www.swirlymusic.com/misterium_tremendum.cfm for audio excerpts and to request a perusal score.

SourcesEmail kaulkin@swirlymusic.com or call 415-386-2201 for a perusal score. The rental/performance fee is negotiable.
HistoryFirst performance: April 2000, San Francisco Conservatory Orchestra, Simon Streatfeild conducting

Second performance: February 2003, Oakland East Bay Symphony, Scott Parkman conducting

Upcoming performances: 2003 Vakhtang Jordania International Conducting competition. Kharkov, Ukraine

ContributorMichael Kaulkin, composer

Letter To Hungary

InstrumentationString Orchestra
Length15 minutes
DifficultyModerately difficult. Appropriate both for a good community or youth orchestra and a professional orchestra.
CommentsThis is a playful crowd pleaser that draws on Hungarian folk music for its enigmatic melodies and infectious rhythms. Most of the folk-style material is original, but the emotional core of this 15-minute piece is the traditional folksong Madárka, madárka. Fragments of the tune are woven into the texture of the plaintive, chorale-like introduction, and it becomes the main focus of the slow middle section. The final minutes consist of a vigorous scherzo that eventually becomes a gentle backdrop for one last majestic statement of the Madárka theme, culminating in a wild csárdás coda.
SourcesPlease contact the composer Michael Kaulkin directly:
HistoryCommissioned in 2005 by the Hungarian Chamber Symphony Orchestra. Premiered November 2005 in Budapest. Scheduled U.S. Premiere: January 2007, Mission Chamber Orchestra, San Jose, California.
Contributorthe composer

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