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Dmitri (Felixovich) Yanov-Yanovsky  Uzbek composer

Born: Tashkent, Uzbekistan, 24.04.1963 

Yanov-Yanovsky was born into a very musical family in Tashkent. He graduated in 1986 from the State Conservatory of Uzbekistan  where he studied composition and instrumentation with his father professor Felix Yanov-Yanovsky. Felix (born May 28 1934) in Tashkent was himself educated at this conservatory as a violinist (1957) and a composer (1959).and has become known composer of orchestral music, chamber music, and vocal works that have been performed in Asia and Europe As a violinist, he worked in the State Symphony Orchestra of Uzbekistan (1954-64) and the String Quartet of Uzbek Radio (1964-68). He has taught at the State Conservatory of Uzbekistan since 1961, where he is now a professor..
During the period after his graduation Dmitri also travelled to European Russia, where he benefited from the advice and support of, among others, Alfred Schnittke and Edison Denisov. 
Of all the many young composers who have emerged in recent years from the 15 new countries of what was once the USSR, Dmitri Yanov-Yanovsky has one of the strongest and most individual voices in which his remarkable surroundings are distinctly reflected in his music. At the same time he is no mere local colorist. His disciplined musical upbringing has given him an alertness to many other traditions, f.ex. American and European. 
In the following year he attended master-classes with Poul Ruders and Edison Denisov at the Lerchenborg Music Days in Denmark.
He has won a number of awards for his musical compositions. Among those: second prize at the 4th International Competition of Sacred Music in Fribourg, Switzerland (1991) for his piece Lacrymosa for soprano and string quartet; ALEA III International Prize in Boston, USA(1992) for his work Presentment for chamber ensemble and tape; Special Award of Nantes at the International Film Festival (France, 1992) for the musical score to the film Kammie. In 1993-94, Yanov-Yanovsky performed and recorded the chang part in his piece Chang Music V together with the Kronos Quartet. And in 2000 he together with Elisabeth Chojnacka performed and recorded on CD his piece Music of  Dreams for harpsichord and chang. In 1999 took place two monographic concerts of the composer in Roma and Torino, in 2003 – in Brussels and Mons (Belgium). In 2002 he won a fellowship from Siemens Corporation, USA where he spent two months in New Jersey as a composer-in-residence.  
The exotic side of Yanov-Yanovsky's imagination is heard to effect in his cycle of five pieces based on the small Central Asian cimbalom called a chang, a difficult instrument which  the composer taught himself to play this. Chang-Musics II, III and IV mimic the chang's jangling sound on other instruments, whether two pianos, string trio or quartet. Other pieces turn to different oriental sounds. like in Presentiment, Awakening and Conjunctions. 
In a different vein are works like Lacrymosa and Hommage à Gustav Mahler (1996), both for soprano and string quartet, Come and Go (1995), and Etude for the stage after Samuel Beckett. These works reflect more Western interests, not only in their texts but in their stylistic allusions to Catholic church music, late German romanticism and post-Webernian modernism. Other pieces, like the orchestral works Sotto Voce (1993) and Ritual (1994), make no such appeal to historical memory, suggesting instead a purer and more self-referential world. 
His works have been performed during the 23d International Music Festival in Brno (1988), the cycles of concerts Europhonia in Zagreb (1990), the Schleswig-Holstein Festival (1994, 1995), Lerchenborg Music Days (1992, 1994), Vienna Jazz Festival (1993), ISCM World Music Days in Stockholm (1994), Kronos And Friends Festival (1993, 1994), Presences (1993, 2000) in Paris, the 17th Music Biennale Zagreb (1993), the Festival Internationale Cervantino in Mexico (1993),  Warsaw Autumn (1997), Moscow Autumn (1996,97), Music Today (1995), Munich biennale (1996), Settembre Musica (2000), Musica Viva's Yarra Valley Festival (2002), Spoleto Festival USA (2002, 2003), Melbourne Festival (2002), Sydney Festival (2003), Alspekte Salzburg (2003),  etc. 
Among performers of his music were the Arditti Quartet, Dawn Upshaw, the Kronos Quartet, the Moscow Ensemble of Contemporary Music, ALEA III Ensemble, Erwartung Ensemble, the New Juilliard Ensemble, Jerusalem Contemporary Players, Xenia Ensemble, Musiques Nouvelles, Anti Dogma Musica, the Xenakis Ensemble, the Nieuw Ensemble, Sentieri selvaggi,  Alter ego, Joel Sachs, Sarah Leonard, Barbara Bayer, Dennis Rassel Davies, Diego Masson, Phillis Bryn-Julson, Herve Desarbre, Pascal Rophe, Ensemble Caput, Elisabeth Chojnacka, HK Gruber, David James, Yo-Yo Ma, the London Sinfonietta, 2e2m, Ian Munro etc. 
In addition to his concert music, Dmitri Yanov-Yanovsky is known for his scores for 48 films and over 25 theatre performances. 
The following works should be also be mentioned - first for the stage: Thread (text by Omar Khayyam), voice, dancer, ensemble (10 players) (1989), The Little Match-Girl (ballet for children, after Hans Christian Andersen), (1996-97); Breath (stage etude no. 2, after Samuel Beckett), flute, clarinet, violin, cello, piano, percussion, tape, (1999); Eh Joe (chamber opera, libretto by Samuel Beckett), mezzo-soprano, actor/video, (2001). 
Of orchestral pieces Yanov-Yanovsky has composed Conjunctions (1995) for string quartet, tape and orchestra and a Concerto for piano and small orchestra, (1983), Ritual, (1994) and Takyr for 6 percussion players (using almost 40 different percussion instruments) and string orchestra (1995).
Among his chamber music are String Quartet (1985), Coda, gijak, chang, (1986) Epilogue for string quartet and piano, 1989, Fragments of Bird Life for recorder (1991); Sounding Darkness for flute, oboe, viola, cello, glass harmonica (1992),  Haiku for Gert Sørensen (Danish percussionist) (1992),  Chamber Music, ensemble (12 players) (1993), Lux aeterna for violin, ensemble (1997); Predestination (after M. C. Escher) harpsichord, ensemble, (1997); 7 Miniatures, flute, (2001), Twilight Music for flute, oboe, B-flat clarinet, harp, mandolin, guitar, violin, viola, cello, double bass, piano, percussion, (2002).
Among his choral music include the most important is Ad amorem (text from the Song of Solomon), vocal ensemble, French horn, 2 trumpets, trombone, tuba, (1997),  Autumn rain in the darkness, (text by Matsuo Basho), soprano, small orchestra, (1987), Wiegelied für Heidelberg, soprano, flute, guitar, violin, percussion, (1996), Moon Songs (text by Federico García Lorca), soprano, 2 pianos, (1996) and Nach der Lese (sentimental comment), (text by Stefan George), soprano, violin, cello, piano, (1999).
Besides this Yanov-Yanovsky has composed Bagatelles, (1982); Cadenza, (1988); Allusions and Reminiscences, (2000) for piano, plus Facets, (1996) and Elf and Mirror, (2000) for organ.
In 1996 he founded the International Festival of Contemporary Music «ILKHOM-XX in Tashkent. Now he is an art director of the festival. 

The Australian Pianist Ian Munro. Being Fascinated by the Uzbek composer  D. Yanov-Yanovsky he commissioned Silhouettes   and gave the premiere of the work at the 
Adelaide Festival in 2002. Munro is himself an inspired composer with many works to his credit.

Moderato leggiero - for the left hand (Maurice Ravel or George Gershwin)
This is the second movement of Dmitri Yanov-Yanovsky's work Silhouettes (2001), a work dedicated to the memory of Hugh Munro, father of pianist Ian Munro who commissioned it, premiered it at the Adelaide Festival in 2002 and has played it many times since. About the work Ian Munro explained to this author: [Silhouettes consist of seven movements]: 1. Moderato (Igor Stravinsky), 2. Moderato leggiero - for the left hand (Maurice Ravel or George Gershwin), 3.Allegro (Charles Ives), 4. Quasi Ragtime (John Cage), 5. Tempo di Marcia (Dmitri Schostakovich), 6. Andante, molto rubato (Claude Debussy) and 7. Largo—Moderato (Alfred Schnittke).
Each of the Silhouettes is not so much a pastiche of the respective composer but, according to Dmitri Yanov-Yanovsky, a composition “following their methods”.

Picture of Dmitri Yanov-Yanovsky brought with permission of 
the composer who has also supplied this author with most 
of the information about himself and his works.

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Julian Yu  (Australian/Chinese-born composer)

Born Beijing/Peking, 1957

Julian Yu studied composition at the Central Conservatory of Music in Beijing. Later he joined the teaching staff there, and from 1980 to 1982 he studied at the Tokyo College of Music with Joji Yuasa and professor Schin–ichiro Ikebe. He then settled in Australia in 1985. and in 1988 Julian Yu was a Composition Fellow at Tanglewood where he studied with Hans Werner Henze and Oliver Knussen.
Julian Yu has won many awards for composition, including the 1988 Koussevitzky Tanglewood Composition Prize; the inaugural and consecutive Paul Lowin Orchestral Prizes of 1991 and 1994; the 1992 Vienna Modern Masters Composition Award; awards in the International New Music Composers' Competitions of 1987, 1988, 1989 and 1990; the 35th Premio Musicale Citta di Trieste, Italy 1988; the 56th Japan Music Concours 1987; the international Irino Prize Competition, Japan 1989; the International 'Piano 2000' Composition Competition, Japan; the Albert H. Maggs Composition Award 1988; the Jacobena Angliss Music Award 1989; the Adolf Spivakovsky Composition Prize 1993; the Margaret Lee Crofts Fellowship (USA) 1988; and an Australia Council Composer Fellowship in 1995.
His work has been performed at many international music festivals including four times at ISCM World Music Days (Switzerland in 1991 and 2004, Mexico in 1993 and Luxemburg in 2000), five times in the Asian Composers' League (ACL) festivals, at the Huddersfield Festival, the Shanghai Spring Festival (2004), the Munich Biennale (1988), and the Melbourne International Festival (1996).
Yu's major works include Philopentatonia, commissioned by IRCAM for Ensemble InterContemporain and later performed by Ensemble Modern, the London Sinfonietta, and the Lausanne Chamber Orchestra conducted by Heinz Holliger; Three Symphonic Poems, performed by Sydney Symphony under Gunther Schuller; Great Ornamented Fuga Canonica, performed by the BBC Symphony Orchestra conducted by Oliver Knussen; Wu–Yu, performed by the Tanglewood, BBC, Luxembourg and Hiroshima Orchestras; puppet music theatre The White Snake, commissioned by Hans Werner Henze and performed at the second Munich Biennale International New Music Theatre Festival; Sinfonia Passacaglissima, performed at the Sydney Opera House by the Tasmanian Symphony Orchestra under Markus Stenz; Marimba Concerto, performed by Evelyn Glennie; Not a Stream But an Ocean, commissioned for the BBC Proms; The Future of Water, commissioned by the Tokyo Philharmonic Orchestra; and Willow and Wattle, commissioned by Melbourne Symphony and performed to great acclaim during their tour of China.
Yu believes that quality and beauty in music come from something deeper than the sound produced: that they spring from the pattern of thought, the inner laws or structure of the music, and that it is this inner pattern which gives integrity and individual character to a work.

Tchaikovsky: Barcarolle  ca 2004
(Source: National Library of Australia)

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(No portrait) Takashi Yosimatsu   (Japanese composer)

Born: Tokyo, 18.03.1953

Takashi Yoshimatsu like Toru Takemitsu is generally considered to be Japan's greatest in the western classical style. He did not receive formal musical training while growing up. He left the faculty of technology of Keio University in 1972, and joined an amateur band named NOA as a keyboard player, more or less imitating the style of of Pink Floyd. He also harboured an interest for jazz and progressive rock as well as exploring electronic music.
He was a fan of the Walker Brothers and the Ventures when he was 13, but when he became 14 it was the symphonies of Beethoven and Tchaikovsky that fascinated him. Since then he composed a number of pieces before attracting attention with the serialist Threnody for Toki in 1981. Soon afterwards, he became disenchanted with atonal music, and began to compose in a free neo-romantic style with strong influences from jazz, rock and Japanese classical music, underscoring his reputation with his 1985 guitar concerto.
Yoshimatsu has composed five symphonies, 11 concertos: one each for bassoon, cello, guitar, trombone, alto saxophone, soprano saxophone, chamber orchestra, traditional Japanese instruments, and some piano works (Three for the left hand alone and one for both hands), a number of sonatas, and various shorter pieces for ensembles of various sizes. His Atom Hearts Club Suites for string orchestra explicitly pay homage to the Beatles, Pink Floyd and Emerson, Lake & Palmer. Yoshimatsu's supporters enjoy his easy, tuneful style and sense of the capacities of different instruments
He has published some essays and primers about classical music. He likes to draw pictures and illustrated their books by himself.
Among his most important works are: Kamui-Chikap Symphony (Symphony No. 1), Op. 40 (1990), Symphony No. 2 "At Terra", Op. 43 (1993), Symphony No. 3, Op. 75 (1998), Symphony No. 4, Op. 82 (2000), Symphony No. 5, Op. 87 (2001), Guitar Concerto Pegasus Effect, Op. 23 (1984), Bassoon Concerto "Unicorn Circuit", Op. 36 (1988), Trombone Concerto Orion Machine, Op. 55 (1993), Saxophone Concerto Cyber Bird, Op. 59 (1994), Piano Concerto Memo Flora, Op. 67 (1997), Threnody to Toki, Op. 12 (1980), Atom Hearts Club Suite I for String Orchestra, Op. 70b (1997), Atom Hearts Club Suite IIa for String Orchestra, Op.79a (1999), 9 Pleiades Dances between 1986 and 2001 opp. 27, 28, 35, 50, 71, 76, 78a & 85 

Pleiades IV (for the left hand)  (?)

4 Little Dream Songs (for the left hand)  (?)

3 Sacred Songs (for the left hand)  (?)

Tapiola Visions (for the left hand), Op. 92  (2004)
Dedicated to the great Japanese pianist Izumo Tateno who has lived in Helsinki, Finland since 1964 recording more than 100 CD - many of these with Finnish music and given 3000 all over the world.
In 2002 he had a stroke which paralyzed his right side and since that he has only played with his left hand  e.g. to his 50th jubilee concert in Victoria Hall, Singapore, June 1st 2010. Tapiola is the title of a symphonic poem by Sibelius.


Ainola - Lyrical Ballads (for the left hand), Op. 95  (2006)
Ainola is the name of the large villa the Finish Government built as an honorary residence for Jean Sibelius.

   
  Ainola outside Helsinki, Finland  

Gauche Dances (for the left hand), Op. 96 (2006)


Concerto for Piano Left Hand Cepheus Note
 for Piano Left Hand and Chamber Orchestra, Op. 102  (2007) (Cepheus is a star constellation in the northern sky. It is named after Cepheus, King of Aethiopia in Greek mythology) This is the first Japanese piano concerto for the left hand alone.

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