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Sacrum Profanum 2022



ICE Kraków Congress Centre


Vortex of spectralism

Let’s allow ourselves to be swept up by the vortex of spectralism, explore the very depth of sound and hear its nature. Our guides along the journey will be masters of spectral music and Horațiu Rădulescu and the Spółdzielnia Muzyczna contemporary ensemble. Although originating from different countries, they both represent the French school of spectralism. Rădulescu is frequently mistaken for the Romanian faction; we heard an extensive presentation of his works in 2017 at the memorable Sacrum Profanum concert featuring Iancu Dumitrescu and Ana-Maria Avram. Now is the time to resolve the controversy in the doctrine! Spectralism models myriad elements of music (form, time and rhythm, harmony, tone) on structures found in the nature of sound itself, visible in spectrograms.

Vortex Temporum is the opus magnum of the genre and of its composer Grisey. It features a complex pulse, sublime consonance and an expansive evolution of tone. All this frequently appears as though under a microscope, in great focus and magnification, as though we could delve deeper into sound. It is said that The Vortex of Time disturbs our sense of time and throws it fully off-balance. The composer calls it “the time of humans, insects, and whales”. He explains, “I tried to create in the slowness a feeling of spherical and vertiginous movement. The ascending movements of the spectra, the interlocking fundamentals in chromatic descent and the continuous filtering of the piano generate a kind of double rotation, a helical and continuous movement which rolls up on itself.” Many listeners find his works to resound with a mystical aura – and it is certainly music with a deep spirituality. Its performance is preceded by Agnus Dei by Rădulescu – a composer renowned for his “sound icons” – in a version for two violins.

Horațiu Rădulescu – Agnus Dei (1991) 9’ (Polish premiere)
Gérard Grisey – Vortex Temporum I, II, III (1994-1996) 40’

Spółdzielnia Muzyczna contemporary ensemble


ICE Kraków Congress Centre

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The centre is a modern world class building, meeting the requirements of international congress organisations, as well as the highest acoustic and stage mechanics standards. The building has been designed in such a way as to host various types of congresses, conferences, concerts, theatrical shows, exhibitions and other prestigious cultural and social events. The high standard of the building place it among the most desired and exclusive congress centres in Europe.